New LRT system launched to ease traffic and pollution in Jakarta

Indonesian President Joko Widodo on Monday brought the first improved version of rail line for Greater Jakarta, hailing the US$2.13 billion (S$2.89 billion) project as a step headed for improvising the capital’s disastrous road congestion and deteriorating air pollution. The driverless, 41.2km Light Rail Transit (LRT) system attaches central Jakarta and its satellite cities in West Java, Bekasi and Depok.

People in Greater Jakarta share and make use of a 418km Commuter Line which is benefited by almost 1.2 million passengers everyday. Jakarta has been in the list of world’s most polluted cities since the month of May and early days of August, topped the charts merged by Swiss air-quality technology company IQAir.

The President threw the allegation on the pollution on so much road traffic and industries making use of coal, also saying that around one million vehicles go to Jakarta every day. “Jakarta is always on the top 10 of list of cities having the most difficult traffic jams,” he said. “Traffic jams and pollution always happen to be in Jakarta.”

The capital, which consists of a population of more than 10 million, is also served by an existing, 16km underground mass fast transport line that connect the southern parts to downtown Jakarta. Indonesia has began building a new city on Borneo island named Nusantara to switch crowded Jakarta as the capital of South-east Asia’s hugest economy. The activity, which has no timeframe for completion, is a prominent part of the President’s legacy as he decides to exit office in 2024.