QUEZON CITY, 09 October 2020 — Ten cities, 10 workplaces, and 30 commercial establishments (including 19 malls) have been nominated as the most bike-friendly in Metro Manila for the Mobility Awards, according to organizers.
The Mobility Awards aims to help prioritize the needs of the majority of Filipinos who do not have cars. This inaugural round will focus on cycling in Metro Manila, where 88% of households do not own cars, but organizers hope to hold the awards nationwide in the future, according to judges from the Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities (ICSC), MNL Moves, The Climate Reality Project (TCRP) Philippines, 350 Pilipinas, and the Pinay Bike Commuter Community who held a press briefing this morning.
The 50 initial nominees as of 3 PM today are:
- 10 local government units: San Juan, Pasig, Caloocan, Makati, Mandaluyong, Manila, Marikina, Muntinlupa, Quezon City and Taguig
- 10 workplaces: Gofer, Chinabank Savings (Sen. Gil Puyat Branch, Makati), One Griffinstone Building, Acquire, Grundfos I.S. Support and Operations Centre, Sykes Shaw 500, Security Bank Corporation (Ayala Avenue, Makati), Risque Designs Marikina, The Medical City-Ortigas, and S&P Global Philippines
- 30 commercial establishments:
- 9 SM malls: SM City North EDSA Annex, SM Megamall, SM Mall of Asia, SM City Sucat, The Podium Ortigas, SM by the Bay, SM BF Parañaque, SM Aura Premier, S Maison, and SM Cubao
- 3 Ayala malls: Ayala Malls Circuit Makati, Ayala Uptown Mall in Taguig, and UP Town Center in Katipunan
- 2 Robinsons malls: Robinson’s Galleria Ortigas and Forums Robinsons Mandaluyong)
- 5 other malls: Gateway Araneta City, Greenhills Ortigas, Eton Centris, Fishermall in Quezon Avenue, Ortigas East
- 3 Decathlon branches: Alabang, Pasig, and Tiendesitas
- Other nominees: University of Santo Tomas, Bonifacio Technology Center in Taguig, 711 United Nations Avenue, UCC Park Café in Ayala Avenue Makati, Mercury Drugstore Malanday, Pan De Amerikana Katipunan Extension, and Burger King in Frontera Verde
Nominees will be assessed by the judges — Maria Golda Hilario of ICSC, Aldrin Pelicano of MNL Moves, Nazrin Camille Castro of TCRP Philippines, Chuck Baclagon of 350 Pilipinas, and Jaramia Amarnani of the Pinay Bike Commuter Community — according to the presence of bike-friendly infrastructure; integration of policies; and implementation, or the proper use of infrastructure as well as enforcement of policies.
Bike loan programs are among the bike-friendly policies discussed by the judges in the press briefing. They mentioned that San Miguel Corporation announced to its employees last October 6 a Special COVID-19 Vehicle Loan for them to be able to purchase bicycles, with the zero-interest loan payable in 12 months. SMC follows in the footsteps of the Pasig City government, which launched its Employee Bike Loan Program last September 22 in celebration of World Car Free Day. The program offers interest-free loans to help City employees buy bikes and bike accessories.
“We have been so used to the notion that traveling around Metro Manila can only be safe and efficient through cars. We see the private sector as catalysts to influence their city leaderships to be more cycling-friendly,” said Nazrin Camille Castro, branch manager of The Climate Reality Project Philippines. “If commercial establishments and work places offer bike-friendly services, but our road systems managed by local government units do not have the same bike lanes, we will not be effective or responsive to employees’ and customers’ needs. Infrastructure and policies need to be holistic and interconnected.”
“We are calling to promote active mobility among children and youth, promote gender inclusion and sensitivity among commuters, and protect women cyclists from catcalling and harassment. The implementation of these programs should not be limited to the local level but expanded nationally, too,” said Jaramia Amarnani, founder of the Pinay Bike Commuter Facebook group. “Protected bike lanes will benefit not only us cyclists but the youth, people with disability, and elders, the other vulnerable groups in our society.”
Based on their scores, the top three awardees from each category will receive bronze, silver, gold, or Katipunan awards. The Katipunan Award is the highest rank which can be attained by having a perfect score, or by achieving three consecutive cold awards in a row.
“The Katipunan Award is inspired by the revolutionary ideals of Katipuneros in uniting Filipinos, securing genuine freedom, and advancing social justice. It emulates these same goals in the Mobility Awards, but in the context of gaining independence from fossil fuels and promoting the mobility needs of the majority,” said Chuck Baclagon, Asia finance campaigner of 350.org and member of 350 Pilipinas.
“Cycling like democracy is also about freedom, freedom of mobility, freedom to move and freedom to reach our destinies. However, that is far from what we have now because freedom is merely a privilege extended unless it is extended to everyone. That is what 350 believes in, 350 believes in people power, 350 believes in the democratic process,” Baclagon added.
Each of the top three awardees for bicycle-friendly cities, workplaces, and commercial establishments will receive bike-friendly recognition signs with their attained rank, as well as gift vouchers from bike-friendly stores for their employees: P5,000 for bronze, P8,000 for silver, and P10,000 for both gold and Katipunan awardees, said Maria Golda Hilario, ICSC associate for program development.
She also announced the Padyak Power to the People! Awards, in which three outstanding cyclist messengers and delivery riders will be awarded in partnership with participating businesses like Foodpanda, Grab, Padyak Padala PH and Gofer. There will also be People’s Choice Awards that will be given to the most voted bicycle-friendly city, workplace, and commercial establishment.
Nominations are unlimited, and the more nominations, the better. Visit mobilityawards.ph to nominate until October 22. Winners will be awarded on October 29.
The Mobility Awards is organized by the Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, MNL Moves, The Climate Reality Project Philippines, and 350.org Pilipinas to inspire action, involvement, and coordination among local government units, workplaces, and commercial establishments aiming to improve conditions for urban mobility.
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