Baguio folk urged to use bicycles in lieu of public transport


BAGUIO CITY – The city legislative body approved a resolution encouraging the city’s residents to use bicycles as a mode of transportation during the period of the extended enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) and its eventual downgrading to general community quarantine (GCQ) until such time that the mass public transport system will fully return to normal.

The resolution authored by Councilor Maria Mylen Victoria G. Yaranon states the ECQ period is a time for innovative and out-of-the-box solutions to address a number of problems that the city is currently facing, thus, the use of bicycles may be a low-tech solution but it will not only address the problems of the riding public but carries with it other advantages as well.

The resolution points out that the use of bicycles as an alternate mode of transportation will provide convenient travel in the city during the ECQ and GCQ until the restrictions on the city’s public transportation system has been relaxed and lifted.

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Further, bicycles have been a familiar form of transportation since its introduction in the 19th century and in the light of the ECQ, riding bicycles can offer a number of advantages namely,  reduce the spread of the dreaded Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) by cutting crowds on public transportation; help keep pollution levels as seen by the low carbon level during the ECQ period; provides physical exercise to keep the people fit; and help address the problem of the residents caused by the restrictions placed on the public transportation system.

Earlier, the city government allowed the temporary operation of bicycle supply and repair shops, textile supply stores and electrical appliance supply and repair shops to operate every Mondays to Wednesdays of the week during the ECQ period.

Baguio City is among the few localities in the country in the extended ECQ that will expire on May 15, 2020 where the regulations and limitations imposed on the city’s public transportation will continue up to the said date unless there will be upcoming decision otherwise that will declare the shortening of the ECQ.

According to the resolution, the transportation challenges faced by the public will continue up to the lifting of the ECQ as the suspension of the city’s public transportation is part of the precautionary measures that will prevent the spread of the deadly COVID-19.

Republic Act (RA) 7160 or the Local Government Code of the Philippines provides that every local government unit shall exercise the powers expressly granted, those necessarily implied therefrom, as well as powers necessary, appropriate, or incidental for its efficient and effective governance, and those which are essential to the promotion of the general welfare. Within their respective territorial jurisdictions, local government units shall ensure and support among other things, the preservation and enrichment of culture, promote health and safety, enhance the right of the people to a balanced ecology, encourage and support the development of appropriate and self-reliant scientific and technological capabilities, improve public morals, enhance economic prosperity and social justice, promote full employment among their residence, maintain peace and order, and preserve the comfort and convenience of their inhabitants.

By Dexter A. See

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