Manila: No more trikes, pedicabs next month

Jose Rodel Clapano - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - The Manila City government will totally phase out gasoline-run tricycles, kuligligs and pedicabs next month, Mayor Joseph Estrada said yesterday.

In an interview with The STAR, Estrada said the phaseout of these vehicles is part of his goal to transform Manila into the country’s electronic tricycle or e-trike capital.

“By (Oct. 15), strictly there will be no more kuligligs, gasoline-run tricycles and pedicabs. We want Manila to become the e-trike capital of the Philippines and to make Manila a green city,” he said.

He said that at present, there are 25,000 gasoline-run tricycles, kuligligs and pedicabs plying all over the city “without a franchise.”

The city government, with the requisite resolution from the city council, has appropriated an initial amount of P120 million to buy 10,000 seven-seater e-trikes.

He said an e-trike can be fully charged in four hours and travel up to 80 kilometers.

Estrada said the e-trikes will be distributed to qualified tricycle drivers and bona fide city residents who will lose their income from the phaseout. The drivers and residents will also get uniforms in orange, the mayor’s trademark color.

“Tricycle drivers are paying a daily boundary of P150 and are spending P200 for their gasoline. That is P350 per day. On an e-trike, they will not spend a single centavo for gasoline. The battery charging will be shouldered by the city government,” Estrada said.

He said under the e-trike program, those who will receive the vehicles will pay P150 to P200 per day for four years.

“Even if we will require them to pay more than P200, it will still be favorable to them because they will still earn money more than what they are earning at present,” Estrada told The STAR.

Estrada said Binondo will be their pilot area for the e-trikes. He said the city government will put up two charging stations at both ends of each e-trike route.

“Pickup stations and two charging stations will be made available for them. There will be many routes. But we will have Binondo as our pilot area. We will also put e-trike stations in the university belt, Port Area, among others,” Estrada said.

City auditor Mario Lipana said the city government is also looking into setting up e-trike routes in Malate and Intramuros.

Lipana said the city government is working with the Manila Electric Co. to set up coin-operated battery charging stations for e-trikes.

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