Big transit decisions face Jakarta’s next governor
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Incumbent Jakarta Governor Fauzi Bowo and Surakarta Mayor Joko “Jokowi” Widodo are squaring off for a runoff election on Sept. 20 to lead the nation’s capital.
The winner of that race will have to award contracts on monorail and elevated-railway projects for Jakarta whose initial estimates have come in at a staggering Rp 14.07 trillion (US$1.49 billion).
Kiswodarmawan, the president director of state-owned construction firm PT Adhi Karya, said that PT Jakarta Monorail, in which the firm holds a 7.5 percent stake, was reviving plans to build a 13-kilometer monorail running through Tanah Abang and the Sudirman Central Business District (SCBD), among other areas.
Initial construction on the project was scuttled due to financial problems. The pillars for the monorail, standing like the ruins of an ancient temple, can still be scene at several points in the capital.
The budget for the proposed monorail, called Jakarta Link Transportation, has been tipped at Rp 3.7 trillion (US$392.2 million), 30 percent of which would come from PT Jakarta Monorail and the remainder from bank loans.
“We have been communicating intensively with officials from the Jakarta administration in the hopes that we can get approval to start,” he said.
The proposal calls for a system that can transport 77,500 passengers a day, 16 stations and a connection to the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) system currently under construction.
Kiswodarmawan said that work on the monorail could start in 2015 and be finished within 30 months.
State toll road operator PT Jasa Marga, state electricity firm PT Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN) and the Jakarta administration would collaborate on the monorail, he said.
The current proposal calls for individual tickets to be sold for Rp 9,500, or for as low as Rp 9,000, if the government provides a subsidy.
Meanwhile, another state construction firm, PT Hutama Karya, revealed that it had spoken to the Transportation Ministry and the Jakarta administration about building a 22-kilometer elevated railway connecting Bekasi, West Java and Slipi, West Jakarta.
PT Hutama Karya president director Tri Widjayanto said the firm would work with state railway company PT Kereta Api Indonesia (KAI) to build the Rp 10.37 trillion (US$1.09 billion) railway. “The elevated railway will be built 15 meters above Jasa Marga’s toll road,” Tri said.
The elevated railway could be integrated with the TransJakarta Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system, commuter trains at Cawang railway station in East Jakarta and potentially the MRT, he said.
Separately, State-Owned Enterprises Minister Dahlan Iskan told reporters in Jakarta that he supported Adhi Karya’s monorail project.
“I am optimistic that the firm can finish the project in two years. However, they [Adhi Karya] will need to get approval from the Jakarta administration before they can do so,” he said.
The minister, however, was less upbeat on Hutama Karya’s planned elevated railway project.
Dahlan said the initial proposed ticket price, Rp 40,000, was too expensive, although Hutama Karya said that prices could be lowered to Rp 17,000 with government subsidies.
Both men who hoped to lead the capital have pledged to reduce the city’ horrendous traffic congestion. On Sept. 20, voters will select a candidate to realize those pledges. (asa)