Authorities May Expand Central Jakarta Motorcyle Ban

JANUARY 05, 2015

Jakarta. Authorities in Jakarta are considering expanding a traffic regulation that bans motorcycles from two of the city’s main roads.

Motorcycle riders looking to use Jl. Thamrin, between the Hotel Indonesia traffic circle and the Mahabharata Monument roundabout, and Jl. Medan Merdeka Barat, have been forced to seek alternative routes since Dec. 17 last year.

The Jakarta administration implemented the ban, which has proven unpopular with motorcycle commuters, as a means to reduce the number of motorcycle deaths on the capital's roads and ease congestion.

Jakarta police consider the trial a success and the outgoing director of Jakarta Police's traffic unit told on Monday that the regulation could be expanded.

"Yesterday there was a discussion with the Jakarta administrative [authorities] and there is a a possibility it will be expanded to Dukuh Atas," said Sr. Comr. Restu Mulya Budyanto.

Expanding the ban to Dukuh Atas would mean a significant extension south along Jl. Thamrin.

Restu said a decision would be made on Jan.17.

A total of 1,700 personnel from the police, the Jakarta Public Order Agency (Satpol PP), the military and the city transportation agency were deployed to enforce the restriction on Dec. 17.

Restu, who will soon be replaced by Sr. Comr. Risyapudin Nursin as director of Jakarta Police's traffic unit, said despite the criticism, the ban had eased traffic congestion along the two main roads.

National Police Chief Gen. Sutarman said in December that Restu — just seven months into the job at the time — would be relieved of his command because "he couldn’t solve Jakarta’s traffic problems.”