From highways to alleys: tracing Cebu City Government restrictions of the Tartanilla, 1945-1990 / Junald Dawa Ango

Dawa Ango, Junald (2012) From highways to alleys: tracing Cebu City Government restrictions of the Tartanilla, 1945-1990 / Junald Dawa Ango. In: 3rd International Conference on Public Policy and Social Science ( ICOPS 2012). Faculty of Administrative Science and Policy Studies, Melaka, pp. 818-824. ISBN 978-967-11354-5-7


More than half a century ago, the tartanilla (Cebu City, Philippines’s local version of the horse-drawn carriage) was the king of the road. It was the main form of transportation around the downtown and in neighboring suburbs. Almost 2,500 rigs crisscrossed the city in 1960. But suddenly the trend of growth stopped, and in the following decades, the number of rigs dropped: 1,192 in 1966, 530 in 1973, 437 in 1992. Today, less than two hundred rigs remain, ferrying passengers and cargoes in the sidestreets of Cebu. Was the downfall of the tartanilla the inevitable consequence of advances in transportation technology? This paper argues that the city government’s increased restrictions of the tartanilla operations significantly contributed to its slide from its primary position in Cebu City’s transportation system. It shows that with each restrictive city ordinance, policy or decree imposed on the rig industry, the number of tartanilla units had decreased and the number of routes had reduced. Surveying the city council’s records on ordinances and minutes, the study traces the Cebu City government’s regulation of these horse-drawn carriages beginning after the Second World War up to the 1990s. The fate suffered by the tartanilla was mainly due to technological developments. Market forces sided with the more efficient mode of transport: the faster tricycles, and later, the bigger taxis and jeepneys. The rigs became just another casualty of progress. However, the Cebu City government had hastened their decline as a form transport. Instead of waiting for market forces to decide what will happen to the tartanilla, the city council passed successive ordinances that quickened the transition from horse-drawn carriages into motorized transport. In its quest to find solutions to traffic problems, it jumped to the conclusion that the rigs were the culprit, and eliminating them would solve traffic congestion (which it did not). Thus it marginalized the tartanilla service. The late king of the road was killed by progress… but city hall conspired.


Item Type: Book Section
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Dawa Ango, Junald
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HE Transportation and Communications > Transportation (General works). Communication and traffic
K Law > K Law in general. Comparative and uniform law. Jurisprudence > Transportation and communication > Traffic regulations. Enforcement
Divisions: Universiti Teknologi MARA, Melaka > Alor Gajah Campus > Faculty of Administrative Science and Policy Studies
Page Range: pp. 818-824
Keywords: Government regulation of transportation; History of horse-drawn carriages; Transportation development; Transportation history
Date: 2012
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