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And away we go: A Transjakarta feeder bus linking Kota, West Jakarta, and Ciputat, South Tangerang, makes its maiden voyage on Jl. Ciputat Raya on Thursday. The fare for the feeder bus has been set at Rp 9,500 (US$1), which includes the regular Transjakarta fare. (JP/R. Berto Wedhatama)
The launch of Transjakarta feeder services connecting Kota, Jakarta and Ciputat, South Tangerang was highly anticipated by residents living in the newly established municipality.
“The operation of the integrated bus network [APTB] is a small but important step toward an integrated public transportation system between Jakarta and South Tangerang as one of its neighbors,” computer store owner Eddi Wibowo, 43, told The Jakarta Post after the bus service launch on Thursday.
He said that such an integrated system was badly needed to encourage motorists to use public transportation and to ease traffic congestion.
Separately, Rita Widyana, 35, a resident of the Bintaro housing estate, said that the new service could complement the efforts made by housing developers in Bintaro and the satellite city of Bumi Serpong Damai to provide feeder bus connections to the Transjakarta bus network.
“But the APTB offers us more options so we no longer rely only on the limited capacity of existing services,” she said as she waited for the APTB bus at a shelter in Ciputat.
She added that integrated public transportation modes would certainly cater to the needs of commuters. “I hope the Jakarta administration remains consistent with its plan to provide more feeder services.”
The intercity bus system, which is integrated with the city’s busway network, serves the routes from Kota terminal traveling along Jl. Mangga Dua Raya, Jl. Medan Merdeka Barat, Jl. MH Thamrin, Jl. Jend. Sudirman, Jl. Sisingamangaraja, Jl. Panglima Polim, Jl. Radio Dalam and Jl. Metro Pondok Indah to Lebakbulus, Pasar Jumat and Jl. Ciputat Raya.
The service is the third to be launched by the Jakarta administration after the Pulogadung-Bekasi and Kalideres-Tangerang routes.
According to Udar Pristono, head of the Jakarta Transportation Agency, the administration has prepared 15 feeder buses, but only four will be operational for the time being.
The fare for the new services has been set at Rp 9,500 (US$1) and includes transfers to busway routes. The feeder line buses operate from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. and the new route is expected to facilitate workers traveling into the city from South Tangerang.
However, not everyone was happy to see APTB buses begin operations, such as the drivers of private bus operator Biang Lala, which has served the same route for years.
“Of course we are unhappy because we have a competitor now. Who can guarantee that we can survive?” said one of the drivers, who refused to be named.