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VERA FILES FACT CHECK: Make It Makati movement backpedals on ‘sharrow’ project

WHAT WAS CLAIMED

MakeItMakati movement says it has agreed to maintain the protected bike lanes on Ayala Avenue after consultations with transport advocates.

OUR VERDICT

Flip-flop:

MakeItMakati announced on Feb. 9 that bike lanes on Ayala Avenue will be converted into shared lanes or sharrows beginning Feb.15. On Feb. 14, the movement said the conversion has been deferred until March 6.

Mar 1, 2023

VERA Files

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Two weeks after the bike lanes on Ayala Avenue were supposed to be converted into shared lanes or sharrows, Make It Makati – a collaboration among the Makati City government, Ayala Land, Inc. and the Makati Commercial Estate Association – walked back on the project after transport groups objected to the plan.

STATEMENT

In a statement of Feb. 24, Make It Makati said:

“Representatives of the #MakeItSaferMakati movement, Ayala Land, Inc. (ALI), and the Makati Business Club’s (MBC) Business for Biking Program […] agreed to maintain the protected bike lanes and to jointly study and implement various street design solutions.”

 

Source: Make It Makati Official Facebook Page, Ayala Land, Inc. and #MakeItSaferMakati movement agree … (archive), Feb. 24, 2023

It added:

“Ayala Avenue will continue to host a physically protected and enforced bike lane – with bollards to separate cyclists from other vehicles, road studs for better visibility, and with enforcement through the Makati Parking Authority.”

FACT

Make It Makati said on Feb. 14 that it will defer until March 6 the implementation of the  project following consistent pushback from transport and cyclist groups since the conversion plan was announced on Feb. 9.

A day before the project was originally set to take place on Feb. 15, Make It Makati said:

“We have noted all constructive comments regarding the conversion of Ayala Avenue bike lanes, particularly those that are related to safety. We agree that the safety of all road users should be given utmost importance. As such, we will enhance measures to further protect bikers. To give us ample time to implement these enhancements, the conversion of bike lanes will be deferred to March 6, 2023.

BACKSTORY

Make It Makati said its sharrow policy was meant to address the need to accommodate the increasing number of public transport users and improve traffic in the city.

(Read VERA FILES FACT SHEET: Paano nakakaapekto ang mga bike lane sa trapiko?)

Some 400 individuals and over 50 transport and cyclist groups opposed the move, emphasizing  its effect on commuters safety.

“Sharrows will not keep us safer. Paint is not protection. Removing bollards is a death sentence. There are design options to keep all of us safe and keep public transport moving without taking space away from our most vulnerable road users: cyclists, pedestrians, women, children, senior citizens, and persons with disabilities,” read the statement published Feb. 11 by Move as One Coalition, a public transport advocacy group.

It also called on various government agencies to make good use of the Philippine Development Plan 2023 to 2028,  which  seeks to establish livable communities.  It  gives pedestrians and cyclists the “highest priority in the hierarchy of road users.” It also pushes for the creation of public and active transport infrastructure in all towns and cities nationwide.

 

Have you seen any dubious claims, photos, memes, or online posts that you want us to verify? Fill out this reader request form.

 

Sources

Make It Makati Official Facebook Page, Ayala Land, Inc. and #MakeItSaferMakati movement agree … (archive), Feb. 24, 2023

Make It Makati Official Facebook Page, Advisory: Heads up, Makatizens! (archive), Feb. 9, 2023

Make It Makati Official Facebook Page, Ayala Land, Inc. and #MakeItSaferMakati movement agree … (archive), Feb. 14, 2023

Inquirer.net, Bike lanes in Ayala Ave to be converted to ‘sharrows’, Feb. 11, 2023

Philstar.com, Bikers, commuters: Removal of ‘gold standard’ Ayala bike lanes puts many at risk, Feb. 12, 2023

The Philippine STAR, Cyclists protest shared bike lanes in Makati, Feb. 13, 2023

CNN Philippines, Cyclists urge Makati govt. to preserve bike lanes on Ayala Ave., Feb. 13, 2023

Move As One Coalition, Protected Bike Lanes Protect Us All, Feb. 11, 2023

National Economic and Development Authority, Philippine Development Plan 2023 to 2028 (view full file), Accessed Feb. 28, 2023

 

(Guided by the code of principles of the International Fact-Checking Network at Poynter, VERA Files tracks the false claims, flip-flops, misleading statements of public officials and figures, and debunks them with factual evidence. Find out more about this initiative and our methodology.)

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