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Taguig residents support biking 

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Workers and residents of Taguig City expressed support to the city government's move to promote biking as an alternative means of transportation. 

"Sa pamamagitan po ng bike, mapapabilis po yung paghatid namin ng mga gamot sa bahay-bahay ng mga pasyente (The use of bikes would speed up our job of delivering medicines to our patients)," Ma. Thelma Valdez, who works at the Barangay Sta. Ana Health Center, said after receiving a bicycle from the city government during the launch of the city's comprehensive plan to promote biking.

Valdez said biking is environment-friendly as it is a "less polluting form of transportation."

Meanwhile, Mattz Magbalana, leader of the United Tipas Cyclists Group, lauded the measure to set up bike lanes in the city as this would make their travel to neighboring cities and localities much faster.

“We thank the city officials for giving us a good bike lane. These bike lanes will be of great help for us to be able to travel safely from Taguig to Rizal and vice versa," Magbalana said.

The 3.5-km. bike lanes launched at the Mercado del Lago, Lakeshore Area, C6 Road in Barangay Lower Bicutan were also equipped with light-emitting diode (LED) lights to ensure the safety of bikers, especially at night.

Vince Michael Baluyot, 37, a bike enthusiast and resident of Barangay Wawa, also welcomed the measure.

“Pag bike, part of my healthy lifestyle. Maganda 'yung may sariling lane, at least safe. Lalo na sa panahon ngayon kinakaharap natin yung mga walang masakyan, bike na lang ang gamitin. Healthy na, makakarating ka din sa pupuntahan mo (Biking is part of my healthy lifestyle. Having your own lane is good – at least it is safe. At this time when we have limited transport options, we can just use bicycles. It is healthy and would also take you to your destination),” he said.

Taguig’s city government earlier set up bike lanes along Cayetano Boulevard and Bayani Road and renovated the protected bike lane along C-6 Road. 

Meanwhile, Taguig Councilor Darwin Icay said plans are underway to institutionalize biking as an alternative means of transportation.

Icay said they were coordinating with nearby cities to make this an initiative across Metro Manila.

"Actually right now, patuloy pa rin tayong nakikipag-coordinate sa ating mga karatig-siyudad upang ito ay maisakatuparan, hindi lang sa Lungsod ng Taguig dahil tayo rin ay sumusuporta sa naging panukala ni Senator Pia Cayetano, yung Safe Pathways Act, kung saan ito ay maglalagay din ng mga pop-up bike lanes sa bawat siyudad for emergency purposes (Right now, we are coordinating with our neighboring cities so that our biking initiative would not only be implemented in Taguig City but in other areas as well. We support Senator Pia Cayetano's Safe Pathways Act, which calls for the installation of pop-up bike lanes for emergency purposes)," he said.

In a statement, Mayor Lino Cayetano said the installation of bike lanes in key areas of the city is part of observing World Bicycle Day, which celebrates the bicycle as a simple, affordable, reliable, and environmentally-fit form of transportation and tool of development.

"All (of these is) for a three-day demo showcasing that biking is doable in Taguig," Cayetano said.

The program would also test the volume of bikers "who can use the routes for essential travels during the general community quarantine for the purpose of establishing an integrated bike path within the city.”

This was made possible through the “Bike-Friendly Taguig Ordinance” that was signed on June 1, he added.

Meanwhile, a group of bicycle riders called on local government units to create safe networks of bicycle lanes in their localities.

"We ask that local government units consider passing an ordinance to establish clear technical guidelines for how the bike lanes will be established and to create the proper institutional structure to implement these initiatives," the Bikers United Marshalls said in a statement.

The Department of the Interior and Local Government earlier urged all local government units to establish bicycle lanes along local roads to support those who would bike to their work destination due to the reduced capacity of public transportation under the general community quarantine.

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