Many cyclists who bike around the Mall of Asia complex will be happy to learn SM is getting with the program. This September, the shopping mall chain giant will be rolling out its bike-friendly initiative, and it will start with the SM Mall of Asia complex in Pasay.
First off, the initiative promises convenient, safe, and accessible bicycle parking. SM also commits to increasing its bike parking capacity in MOA by 50 per cent by adding bike racks and new street-level bike parking zones very near mall and shop entrances.
Apart from installing bike-centric street signs, SM also promises to install repair stations, a helmet depository, and bike supply and refreshment stations. The rest of the SM malls nationwide are expected to follow in the coming months.
The Mall of Asia area, with its wide roads and seaside view, has attracted a lot of Manila’s bikers especially in the last few months when many city dwellers have shifted to bicycles as means of transport. More and more people are also taking up biking as hobby and exercise after the lockdown.
“By transforming our malls into bike-friendly establishments, we hope to support inclusive and safe mobility, and promote a culture of cycling,” says SM Engineering, Design, and Development President Hans Sy Jr. who conceptualized and spearheads the SM Bike-Friendly project.
Sy adds that the bike facilities are designed to be enjoyed by cyclists young and old, whether they’re biking for recreation or commuting. The Bike-Friendly initiative also promises to include building a connected network of bike lanes on all roads in the MOA Complex stretching up to 18 kilometers, including a dedicated bike lane along J.W. Diokno Boulevard.
SM says they also plan to connect the mall’s network of bike lanes to major roads in the city, install clearly visible bike-centric road signs to provide riders and motorists easy and orderly routing within the commercial complex.
Here are the other features cycling enthusiasts can look forward to as SM goes bike-friendly:
1) Bike repair stations will be placed in strategic locations to assist bikers in emergencies and maintenance. Each station is equipped with a bike stand, floor pump, and essential tools customers can use for free.
2) Bikers can simply leave their helmets at no cost at the Helmet Depository located at Ocean Drive for their trips to the mall.
3) Bike Vendo Machines carrying ride essentials such as bike tubes, lights/blinkers, bike locks, repair kits, tire patch kits, hand wipes, ponchos, gloves, and multitools. A separate vending machine for hydration and energy snacks will also be available. A Seaside Bike Kiosk offering a wider range of accessories and gear will be available for sale.
The Bike-Friendly SM project is one of the highlights of SM’s Green Movement campaign promoting environment-friendly initiatives for sustainable communities.