City’s first metered taxi rests in museum
Parked: One of the first metered taxicabs in Jakarta is added to the Transportation Museum’s collection in East Jakarta. Transportation company PT Blue Bird donated the taxi over the weekend to mark its 40th anniversary. JP/Lutfi RakhmawatiOne of the first professional taxicabs operating in the city made its way into the Transportation Museum at Taman Mini Indonesia Indah (TMII) in East Jakarta over the weekend.
The frost blue car, which was made in 1972, was added to a collection displaying the history of public transportation in the capital.
The taxi, which is the oldest of its kind, is equipped with a taximeter and belonged to the Jakarta-based transportation company PT Blue Bird.
The company donated the car to the museum to mark its 40th anniversary this year.
The General Motor’s Torana sedan with licence plate number B1972BB hit Jakarta’s roads in May 1972.
The taxi offered a professional, haggle-free service to its customers.
The taxi was used by the company until 1984 when it expanded its fleet, purchasing a newer model available from a different brand.
“I think the metered taxi is a milestone in Indonesia’s public transportation service. We feel honored to donate our oldest taxi,” Blue Bird CEO Purnomo Prawiro said.
TMII museum coordinator Arief Djoko Budiono said that the presence of a metered taxi was an important phase in the city’s history.
“A taxi with a meter represents a metropolitan city. It offers a reliable and safe form of public transportation,” he said.
Arief said that the taximeter system, which determined fares based on the distance, was fair for passengers.
“The professional cab companies have shaped the face of Jakarta as a city that welcomes outsiders with a fair system,” he said.
Arief said that the taxi would be displayed in the museum along with other historical objects, including Garuda Indonesia’s DC 9 PK GNT.
The plane, which was made in the United States in 1979, is now located in the museum’s front yard.
The museum also displays the train car that took Sukarno and Mohammad Hatta, Indonesia’s founding president and vice president, from Yogyakarta to Jakarta in 1946.
Arief hoped that more private companies would donate items.
“The private sector plays an important role in developing our transportation system. We would be more than happy if those companies donated memorabilia to the museum,” he said.
Arief said that Blue Bird was the fifth private company to donate a collection piece to the museum.
The company also donated its first executive car to the museum.
Since 1993, PT Blue Bird has been running Silver Bird for its executive passengers.
The idea for an executive taxi service was proposed after the company provided transportation for more than 100 state leaders attending the 10th Non-Aligned Movement summit in 1992.
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