Мы не Мумбаи: Барселона прогоняет с улиц нелегальных рикш
Согласно подсчетам мэрии, в настоящее время около 2000 преимущественно нелицензированных водителей ведут свой бизнес рикшами в Барселоне. Теоретически рикши запрещены на узких улицах старого города с мая по октябрь, но это ограничение, как и многие другие, открыто нарушается.
В июле полиция конфисковала 122 повозки, и городской совет предлагает политику «нулевой толерантности» за нарушения ими дорожного движения, пытаясь взять бизнес под контроль. Лишь около 500 рикш зарегистрировано в органах власти.
Технически рикши могут, как велосипедисты, использовать велосипедные дорожки и широкие тротуары, но город хочет, чтобы их охватывал отдельный подзаконный акт.
Estimates put total around 2,000 but vehicles remain in regulatory vacuum
Barcelona city council has announced it is to take action against the mostly unlicensed rickshaws that have proliferated on the city’s streets in recent years, which some estimates put as high as 2,000.
“Barcelona isn’t Bombay,” said Jaume Collboni, the deputy mayor. “We have cycle lanes that are for bicycles, pavements for pedestrians and we aspire to having a respectful and quality tourism model.”
Rosa Alarcón, the city’s councillor for mobility, complained that the rickshaws “contribute nothing to citizens’ mobility because they are fundamentally focused on tourism”.
However, outside the tourist season, drivers often look for clients outside nightclubs, concerts and football matches.
In July police decommissioned 122 rickshaws, and the council now proposes a “zero-tolerance” policy on traffic infringements in an effort to bring the business under control. Only around 500 rickshaws are registered with the authorities.
As with the explosion in the number of electric scooters, as well as the ubiquitous bike and Segway tours, the problem is that rickshaws exist in a legal vacuum. Technically speaking they may, like bikes, use cycle lanes and wide pavements, but the city wants them to be covered by a separate bylaw.
The existing law states that they can use pavements or cycle lanes that are “sufficiently wide”, which Alarcón insists is too vague. In theory they are banned from the narrow streets of the old city from May to October but this restriction, like many others, is openly flouted.
“We are part of the tourist industry, not taxi drivers,” says César Gestor, a spokesman for the rickshaw drivers. He said they had been trying to get the sector regulated for years but the authorities were unwilling to listen.
He disputed the figure of 2,000 rickshaws, claiming it was closer to 1,000, only half of which were licensed. “We are willing to sit down, talk and find a way to regulate the business,” he said. “What’s clear is we can’t go on like this. We can’t have a European city where rickshaws are banned. We are not doing anything illegal.”