Jakarta. The Greater Jakarta Transportation Body, or BPTJ, an agency under the Ministry of Transportation that oversees transit issues in and around the capital, has prepared a comprehensive outline to reduce congestion in one of Southeast Asia's largest metropolitan areas.
According to the National Development Planning Agency, or Bappenas, traffic congestion in Greater Jakarta wastes around Rp 100 trillion ($7.4 billion) each year due to the high number of motorcycles and cars on the roads and poor infrastructural planning.
Congestion is also exacerbated in the capital by a strikingly low number of residents who use public transportation systems, like the TransJakarta busway. An estimated 20 percent of city residents use those systems, compared to neighboring Singapore, where about 60 percent of residents use public transport each day to commute to and from work.
The agency reported that the number of daily commuters in and around Jakarta climbed to 1.1 million people recently, 1.5 times higher than the number in 2002.
To lessen rising traffic congestion, BPTJ announced in a statement that it has formulated at least 11 strategies to resolve the issue.
"First, push and pull policies like the odd-even restriction rule, a motorcycle ban in certain areas and providing lots of alternative shuttle transport," the statement said.
"Second, fixing 17 congestion spots caused by overcrowding at 17 train stations," the agency added, while mentioning the Sudirman Station in Central Jakarta, where about 60,000 passengers transit each day.
Integrated electronic payment systems, motorcycle bans, electronic road pricing (ERP), developing elevated looplines and mass rapid transit systems are among other strategies BPTJ deems effective to resolve the traffic jam.
"Elevated looplines can avoid train conflicts with other vehicles on the crossroad," BPTJ explained.
"TransJakarta's 13th corridor [which runs from Jalan Kapten Tendean in South Jakarta to Ciledug in Banten] should provide more routes in Tangerang," BPTJ added.
These strategies are expected to yield significant outputs by 2019.