TACLOBAN CITY – The members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan(SP) of Leyte approved on the third and final reading the proposed Leyte Bike Lane Ordinance of 2020 during their regular session last November 20.
The ordinance was approved two days before the celebration of the National Bike Day which is observed every fourth Sunday of November as approved by President Rodrigo Duterte through Presidential Proclamation 1052 which he signed on November 18.
“Basically this reinforces the mandate that we impose through our Environmental Code ordering local government units to come up with a different networks of bicycle lanes in their respective municipalities,” Vice Governor Carlo Loreto said.
“In this ordinance it does not only requires them to put up bike lanes but also activity areas which can be used under the new normal like areas for jogging or walking provided that they still follow the minimum health protocols such as wearing of face masks to prevent virus transmission,” he added.
Under the ordinance, authored by the vice governor, the province through the Active Mobility Committee which is chaired by Governor Leopoldo Dominico Petilla with Loreto as his vice chair, shall review all roads within its jurisdiction and determine sections that may be developed into a continuous bike lane network.
The committee also includes the provincial legal officer as secretary and members are representative from the provincial engineering office, planning and development office, budget office, disaster risk reduction and management office, health office, SP chairman on committee on infrastructure, representative from local cycling group, persons with disability, women’s group, senior citizens, and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).
The committee is also mandated to adopt traffic engineering solutions that will prioritize, complement, and support safe and efficient biking and walking.
The measure mandates that all bike lane designs and sidewalks must comply with the design standard by the Department of Transportation and the DPWH and must also take into account for the safety, social distancing measures, operating speed, volume and composition of traffic and the carriageway width of the road.
Signages that indicate bike lane and motor vehicle lane are also need to be installed including speed limits, and other traffic rules to ensure safety of all road users.
The traffic management office of the city and the municipality is also task to maintain the bicycle lane network from use of motorized transport vehicles, and illegal road obstruction such as illegal parked cars.
The ordinance also mandates that every bikers or cyclists must use personal protective gear for their safety such as helmets, closed shoes, head gear, bicycle lights or reflectors, while minor or those below age 18 years old are required to use additional appropriate protective gear as determined by the committee.
The municipality or city under Leyte province will have to adapt the ordinance and include a penalty provisions to be impose against violators.