FAIL: ‘Pedestrians better train in parkour first before crossing this zebra cross’ in Jakarta

Screenshot: @koalisipejalankaki / Instagram
Screenshot: @koalisipejalankaki / Instagram

Most Indonesian cities are notoriously unfriendly towards pedestrians, none more so than the capital of Jakarta. Seeing sidewalks overridden with kaki lima (food carts) and motorcycles (either parked or using them as a shortcut) is a common occurrence but that’s on top of basic design flaws like an overall lack of sidewalks and crosswalks.

And on top of the design flaws, there are the design fails like this:

This photo, showing a zebra cross outside of the Tamini Square shopping center in Makasar, East Jakarta, was posted by Koalisi Pejalan Kaki (Pedestrian Coalition), a group that advocates for pedestrian rights in Indonesia.

Their sarcastic caption says, “Pedestrians better train in parkour first before crossing this zebra cross.”

This design fail is clearly more than just an annoyance for pedestrians. Reporting on the viral photo, Kompas interviewed several local residents who noted that the failure to leave an opening in the fence to accommodate the zebra cross made it significantly more dangerous as pedestrians had to enter the street from an area where angkot minibuses are often parked and where it was more difficult to see incoming traffic.

Seeing design flaws that are due to a lack of funds is one thing, but in this case the government actually wasted money on an unnecessary segment of barrier that seems to exist only to make life harder and more dangerous for pedestrians.

This one certainly goes up there in the Indonesian sidewalk hall of shame (alongside those cities that have tactile guiding blocks for the blind that lead them directly into trees or, in case,  a canal). With such carelessness on the part of the government, it’s no wonder that Indonesian are among the least active walkers in the world (according to one study).


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