Big motorcycle companies says they were not included in MMDA’s MC Lane TWG

This coming March 20th, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) will start the full implementation of the Motorcycle (MC) Lane along Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City. Violators will be slapped with a PHP 500 penalty after the dry run which started on March 9th.

As of March 13, the MMDA reported that they have already flagged down 949 motorcycle riders for MC Lane violations, while only 545 drivers were flagged down since they’re not supposed to be driving on the exclusive MC Lane. These riders and drivers were only given a warning and were not penalized.

While the MMDA maintains that they have consulted various stakeholders as part of the Technical Working Group (TWG) before implementing the MC Lane such as 1-Rider Partylist, other government agencies, LGUs, and motorcycle groups, one group says that they were not consulted, and were never even made aware of the new policy for motorcycle riders until only last night: The “Big 4” Japanese motorcycle manufacturers.

Japanese ‘Big 4’ on MC lane: we were not consulted imageMDPPA officers (L-R): Toni Acuesta, Armie Reyes, Erwin Estrada, Boying Mojica, Lisette Fajardo and Buboy Lejano, Jr.

The Motorcycle Development Program Participants Association (MDPPA) is a group composed of the “Big 4” Japanese motorcycle manufacturers Suzuki, Yamaha, Honda, and Kawasaki. The group, which traces its roots back to 1973 (50 years ago), has been promoting safe motorcycle riding ever since.

“We were not invited...actually, ngayon ko lang narinig yong [tungkol sa Motorcycle Lane],” says Yamaha Motor Philippines executive and former MDPPA president, Buboy Lejano, during a presscon held in Pasig City on March 15, 2023.

MDPPA added that, given the traffic congestion on major roads, MC Lane may not even be beneficial for motorcycle riders and other road users.

“There are some road conditions like EDSA that even with 1 [dedicated MC] lane, it wouldn’t work...additionally, if the traffic is almost on a standstill, a motorcycle lane will not work in EDSA because naka-tigil eh (standstill traffic). The motorcycle, its advantage, is to filter through traffic. There’s only a certain [traffic flow] speed that you can put a motorcycle lane. If it is a congested street, even an exclusive [MC] lane would not work.”

Under MMDA Resolution No. 22-15, the right outermost lane of Commonwealth Avenue shall be designated as an exclusive bicycle lane. The second lane and third lane of the same avenue will be designated as exclusive Public Utility Vehicles (for jeeps, UV Express, buses) and motorcycle lanes, respectively.