Car towing and clamping ordinances: Passing the buck of LGU’s negligence

Major local government units in the region and in some other parts of the country as well are actively implementing their car towing and clamping ordinances. While erring drivers can only whine and scratch their heads, local officials are getting their paychecks for inefficiency if not laughing their way for their negligence.

Republic Act 9160 otherwise known as the Local Government Code of the Philippines is clear:

Section 16. General Welfare. – Every local government unit shall exercise the powers expressly granted, those necessarily implied therefrom, as well as powers necessary, appropriate, or incidental for its efficient and effective governance, and those which are essential to the promotion of the general welfare. Within their respective territorial jurisdictions, local government units shall ensure and support, among other things, the preservation and enrichment of culture, promote health and safety, enhance the right of the people to a balanced ecology, encourage and support the development of appropriate and self-reliant scientific and technological capabilities, improve public morals, enhance economic prosperity and social justice, promote full employment among their residents, maintain peace and order, and preserve the comfort and convenience of their inhabitants.

Along with that provision is a mandate that :

(c) The local government units shall, in conformity with existing laws, continue to prepare their respective comprehensive land use plans enacted through zoning ordinances which shall be the primary and dominant bases for the future use of land resources: Provided. That the requirements for food production, human settlements, and industrial expansion shall be taken into consideration in the preparation of such plans.

Among the laws local government units are supposed conform with, and implement, is the National Building Code of the Philippines. Said Code clearly provides the ratio of parking slot requirements for every building that is to be constructed and occupied.

No person or entity can begin construction without the construction permit from the local government. In most cases, no one can also occupy the building constructed without the occupancy permit, again, issued by the local government.

But while local government units are cashing in on these permits, the real intent of the National Building Code is sidelined. Buildings appear without full compliance to the requirements including the provision of car parking slots. And who bears the burden? The car owners especially those who faithfully complied with their obligations as they availed of the privileges of owning a vehicle.

Unfortunately, the balance always tilt in favor of the government particularly of local officials who have reserved parking slots in government buildings and in some commercial establishments when in fact, it is their very negligence that caused this car boom. Had they been strict with implementing the law, people would have second thoughts buying cars. (Note: we are only talking here about parking requirements and not even traffic management and public transportation.) And we won’t be wasting public debate and feeding also the inefficiency of Congressmen who have been considering time and again passing the “no-garage no-car” bill.

Below is the table of parking requirements per type of building or unit, or floor use based on Rule VII of the Implementing Rules and Regulations of the National Building Code:

Low income single detached living unit with individual lots not more than 100m² Pooled parking: 1 slot/10 units
Multi-family living units regardless of no. of stories with average living floor area of 50m² 1 slot/8 units
Multi-family living units regardless of no. of stories with average living floor area of above 50m² to 100m² 1 slot/ 4 units
Multi-family living units regardless of no. of stories with average living floor area of more than 100m² 1 slot/ unit
Hotels 1 slot/ 10 rooms
Residential hotels and aparteles 1 slot/ 5 units
Motels 1 slot/ unit
Shopping centers 1 slot/ 100m²
Markets 1 slot/ 150m²
Restaurants, fast food outlets, bars and beerhouses 1 slot/ 30m² of customer area
Nightclubs, supper clubs and theater-restaurants 1 slot/ 20m² of customer area
Office building 1 slot/ 125m² of gross floor area
Pension/ boarding/ lodging houses 1 slot/ 20 beds
Other buildings in business and commercial zones 1 slot/ 125m² of gross floor area
Public assembly buildings 1 slot/ 50m² of spectator area
Places of worship and funerary parlors 1 slot/ 50m² of congregation area
Elementary schools, secondary schools, vocational and trade schools 1 slot/ 10 classrooms
College and universities 1 slot/ 5 classrooms
Hospitals 1 slot/ 25 beds
Bowling alleys 1 slot/ 4 alleys
Amusement centers 1 slot/ 50m² of gross floor area
Clubhouses, beach houses, etc. 1 slot/ 100m² of gross floor area
Factories, manufacturing, mercantile, warehouses and storage bin 1 slot/ 1000m² of gross floor area
Tourist bus parking 2 bus slots/ hotel or theater restaurant

Parking slots are defined as follows:

  • The size of an average automobile (car) parking slot must be computed at 2.50 meters by 5.00 meters for perpendicular or diagonal parking and at 2.15 meters by 6.00 meters for parallel parking.
  • A standard truck or bus parking/loading slot must be computed at a minimum of 3.60 meters by 12.00 meters.
  • An articulated truck slot must be computed at a minimum of 3.60 meters by 18.00 meters which should be sufficient to accommodate a 12.00 meters container van or bulk carrier and a long/hooded prime mover.

(Original Source here)

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