Webinar promoting biking in Metro Cebu kicks off
CEBU CITY, Philippines — With clamor for bike lanes and demand for bicycles high due to coronavirus lockdowns, the government here and abroad, and private organizations organized webinars aimed to promote biking in Metro Cebu.
The webinar series titled Metro Cebu Biking Webinar was launched on Monday, August 10 with at least 140 participants from different parts of the globe.
The event, organized by the Metro Cebu Development and Coordinating Board (MCDCB), in partnership with the Netherlands Embassy and experts from the Dutch Cycling Embassy, was designed to help local governments and members of the private sector here to ‘understand the benefits of biking’.
“For Metro Cebu leaders and decision-makers to understand comprehensively the benefits of biking, a Metro Cebu Biking Webinar will be organized together with the Dutch Cycling Embassy (DCE) as experts,” organizers stated in a joint advisory sent to the press.
It also included a two-day bicycle workshop ‘to equip Metro Cebu local government units (LGUs) with technical and practical knowledge on planning bicycle infrastructure in their localities, covering topics from infrastructure to budget planning’.
“The output of the workshop will include both an implementable short-term plan for LGUs that can be done within 30 days, as well an overview of planning for mid- and long-term projects, plans, and activities that support the development of cycling culture,” they added.
For their part, the Kingdom of Netherlands expressed willingness and commitment to help local officials in Metro Cebu in coming up with an ‘efficient and effective’ mode of transportation, particularly biking.
Ambassador of the Kingdom of Netherlands in the Philippines Saskia de Lang said that with the webinar series, they would be able to share knowledge about biking from their country.
“(This) webinar is an example of what we’re doing, which is to share knowledge and experience and organizational aspects of biking, and this is the first step of what we’re doing,” De Lang said.
The Netherlands is among the countries in the world where biking is a popular mode of transportation.
During the first day of the webinar on Monday, Dutch experts on biking Mark Wagenbuur and Willem Snel presented how their nation achieved their ideal biking system, complete with an expansive network of biking routes.
Popular travel site Lonely Planet also described the biking industry in The Netherlands to have evolved into a popular tourism activity.
Biking in Metro Cebu
Organizers said that the biking webinar stemmed from growing concerns on limited public transportation brought about by the quarantine rules due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
“The resulting consultation revealed that Local Governments lack knowledge and experience in crafting plans related to the promotion and protection of means of sustainable mobility,” the groups said.
Public transportation have remained limited in Metro Cebu even if most parts of the area have been placed under a state of general community quarantine (GCQ). In addition, calls for safe biking spaces on roads and bike lanes have continued to prevail.
These instances led the Mandaue City government to establish bike lanes around its territorial jurisdiction. Cebu City, meanwhile, is finalizing its plans for the implementation of cycle paths. /dbs
READ MORE: Bike lanes in Cebu City underway
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