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Peditaxi marks 5th year cycling Kokusai Street

Date Posted: 2009-05-21

They’re quiet, environmentally friendly, and simply fun to ride.
Peditaxis, people-powered bicycles with passenger seats in front, are celebrating a 5th anniversary as a taxi service on Kokusai Street in downtown Naha City. A non-profit organization created Peditaxi after observing the mile-long international street was clogged by cars and buses operating in a narrow corridor surrounded by souvenir shops and other tourist attractions.

Female drivers peddle the bicycles, chauffeuring passengers up and down the street. The sleek peditaxis have semi-enclosed compartments to protect passengers from rain. Peditaxi is operated by NPO Foundation ECOMO. “We operate the business with four peditaxis,” says company representative Etsuko Takaesu. She says that “as we celebrate our fifth anniversary we “want to make one of our taxis to work for donations, with proceeds going to protect the coral in Okinawa’s oceans.”

She says Peditaxi will begin selling advertising, and asks local businesses for support. The ¥30,000 monthly cost is fixed on three-month contracts. “Anybody has a right to put an ad on a pedicab. The ad money will be given to the Kariyushi Beach Coral Reclamation Project as a donation, and to buy coral seedlings for ocean planting.”

Takeshi Onaga, Naha City’s mayor, participated in 5th anniversary ceremonies, praising the Pedicabs for being “gentle taxis to humans and the environment, while offering a charming service to Naha City.” Onaga promised the company his continued support.

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