By Jennifer P. Rendon
Camp Martin Delgado, the home of the Police Regional Office (PRO)-6, will try to beat other police headquarters in getting the tag as the most bike-friendly camp in the country.
Jeck Conlu, head of Iloilo City’s Public Safety and Transportation Management Office (PSTMO), said that his office is working with the PRO-6 leadership in crafting a master plan to make the PRO-6 camp a bike-friendly ground.
Camp Delgado sits on a 6.59-hectare lane located at Fort San Pedro, City Proper district, Iloilo City. It also hosts other offices such as the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA)-Region 6, the Office of Civil Defense (OCD)-6, and some units of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
But making Camp Delgado suitable for cyclists will start once the civil works being undertaken inside the headquarters are over.
The camp’s existing roads are undergoing construction.
“Hopefully, we could realize the plan before the term of Brigadier General (Sidney) Villaflor,” according to Conlu, who was the guest of honor and speaker during the PRO-6 flag-raising ceremony on Oct. 2.
For starters, bicycle racks would be set up in several areas all over the camp.
The bike lane will also be designed to connect to the bike lane that would be set up along Muelle Loney going to the Esplanade area.
Presently, Camp Delgado’s parking spaces are limited and can only accommodate a few visiting police and clients.
“By designing the camp to be bike-friendly, it’s like we’re encouraging policemen and even clients to go on bicycle when transacting business inside the camp,” he said.
When the plan was opened up to him, Conlu said he gladly welcomed it since it is in line with Iloilo City’s plan to maintain the metropolis as the biking capital of the Philippines.
Meanwhile, Conlu lauded the PNP for being their partner in enforcing traffic rules and regulations.
He cited that PSTMO is undermanned against the bulk of some 1 to 2 million morning population in the city alone, including those from the province and first towns, Guimaras island, tourists, and visitors. This is on top of the nighttime population of around 800 thousand people.
He added that Iloilo City is home to almost half a million people who face challenges on road crashes, mobility, high fuel prices, and costly fares.
It somehow follows that there are cases of obstructions on bike lanes, road rage, and heavy traffic during rush hours.
“This is just a few of the reasons why the city government is keen in implementing its bike laws, and road safety rules,” he said.
Buoyed by the clamor of the private sector, Iloilo City has crafted the Bicycle Network Plan.
The city has more than 14-kilometer bike lane that stretches across different areas of the city. Aside from earning the tag of biking capital of the Philippines, Iloilo City was also named the country’s most bike-friendly city in 2021.
“Our enforcement team is actively monitoring our city’s bike lanes for any obstructions or illegal parking. Together, we can ensure that these lanes remain safe and accessible for cyclists,” Conlu said.