Limlingan: Bicycle lanes no more

The Advocate

TRAVELLING from the City of San Fernando to Angeles City or vice versa via Mac Arthur Highway on a weekend can consume a lot of travel time either on a private vehicle or on a public utility jeepney. We can blame heavy traffic that is the result of great volume of vehicles, road obstructions and a greater number of pasaway drivers.

Several years back, the city government of San Fernando established a bicycle lane in response to the clamor and also the need of cyclists for a safe and separate lane that is exclusive for bikers. The lane was even painted blue as a demarcation line to remind motor vehicles that there is a bicycle lane that exists.

Along the provincial capitol - lazatin boulevard road, aside from the blue lines are the blinking lights that resemble those along airport runways. The purpose of these on airports is to guide taking-off and landing airplanes while on the runway.

Going back to the traffic at the Mac Arthur, small vehicles such as cars and jeepneys are now using the bicycle lanes as an extension of the already multi-lane highway due to congestion. I was reminded of a river swelling with the water looking for another channel. The purpose of these bicycle lanes is deviated and they did not become what they should be.

Although the city had already done its role in providing for the needs of those in the cycling world, we see the need to do something more so that motorists would stop using bicycle lanes and spare them for the pedal pushers.

On the other hand, we can see the difficulty of apprehending all those motorists who use the bicycle lanes even if the same is not for them. Their sheer number alone if apprehended, would generate traffic jams. Perhaps the city would want to educate further motorists in respecting the bicycle lanes that were spared by the city for bikers.

During rush hours, many thoroughfares in the city are instantly converted into busy streets of Metro Manila. The Jose Abad Santos Avenue in the city that leads to the two giant malls in the province becomes Pampanga's EDSA. The number of motor vehicles in the country seems to multiply rapidly. We can wish that roads multiply rapidly too to accommodate increasing number of vehicles.

Meanwhile, the lowly bicycle remains to be hopeless as long as there are motorists passing through bicycle lanes.


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