Senate OKs walkable, bikeable communities bill on 3rd reading

Senate OKs walkable, bikeable communities bill on 3rd reading | GMA News Online

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Published September 27, 2022 8:46pm

The Senate on Tuesday passed on third and final reading a bill that seeks to institutionalize active transport by establishing a safe pathway network of bicycle lanes, walkways, and slow streets. Without any opposition, 21 senators voted to pass Senate Bill 1290. Under the proposed measure, the Safe Pathways Network will be created within 12 months of the effectivity of the proposed measure for the use of active transport and electric personal mobility devices. SB 1290 defines active transport as a physical activity undertaken as a means of transport, such as walking, cycling, or using other non-motorized vehicles. The Safe Pathways Network shall consist of bike lanes, walkways, and slow streets or local roads providing safe and convenient access and use by restricting motor vehicle access, use, or speed limits on certain days or hours of the day. The bill provides that all users of non-motorized vehicles and electric personal mobility devices shall, as far as applicable, obey traffic rules and right-of-way. The measure will be funded by amounts set aside by the local government units for infrastructure projects within their jurisdiction and the appropriations from the Department of Transportation and Department of Public Works and Highways as provided by the annual national budget. The bill is in line with the government’s policy to improve infrastructure and a change in mindset to encourage and accommodate sustainable and healthy modes of active transport and to provide safe and convenient pathways for commuters. “Prioritizing active transport will result in reduced carbon emissions, reduced road congestion, less use of energy and resources, as well as less dependence on oil, lightening the impact of oil price shocks. It will also provide multiple health benefits and enhance the quality of life,” the bill read. Further, the bill stated that the proposals are in line with the state’s commitment to Sustainable Development Goals 3 (Good Health and Well-Being), 7 (Affordable and Clean Energy), 9 (Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure, 11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities), 13 (Climate Action), and 17 (Partnerships for the Goals). — VBL, GMA News

Tags: bike lane, walkway, Safe Pathways Network Bill, Senate

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