A worker walks through an MRT tunnel under construction in Senayan, Jakarta. (Antara Photo/Rosa Panggabean)

'It Looks Like a Cricket': Jakarta's Acting Governor Wants MRT Trains to Be Redesigned

BY :EDO KARENSA

JANUARY 17, 2017

Jakarta. Jakarta's acting governor Sumarsono said on Tuesday (17/01) he wants the trains for the city's MRT, or Mass Rapid Transit, system to be redesigned as they currently "look too much like a cricket."

Sumarsono, temporarily taking the governor mantle from Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama who is on leave for his re-election campaign, said the current design of the trains is not aerodynamic and has not been consulted with the Jakarta administration.

"When the contractors presented the design, around 90 percent of the people in the meeting said, 'How did we end up with this design?' No one remembered approving it," Sumarsono told reporters at Jakarta's City Hall.

Sumarsono had also told the reporters that the current train design looked like a cricket.

The Jakarta administration has asked the Japanese contractors, Nippon Sharyo and Sumitomo Corporation, to redesign the train.

"We expect it wouldn't cost us that much more to redesign the train," Sumarsono said.

He added that redesigning the train should not delay the completion of the MRT project, which was set to start operations in March 2018.

The MRT network is expected to relieve traffic congestion in Indonesia’s capital.

Its North-South line, the first to be completed since the project was inaugurated in October 2013, will connect Kampung Bandan in North Jakarta and Lebak Bulus in South Jakarta on a 23.3 kilometer-long track.

The first phase of the project, funded by the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) that later merged into the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), is expected to open in 2018.

The Jakarta MRT is estimated to cost at least $1.7 billion and should be fully completed by 2027.

The Jakarta administration will be the main owner of the project.

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