Jakarta to shut down several toll gates to speed up traffic during Asian Games

One of the biggest concerns about Jakarta hosting the Asian Games (along with the city of Palembang) is whether athletes, sports officials and others who need to make it to competition venues quickly during the massive sporting event will be able to do so in spite of the Indonesian capital’s notoriously awful traffic.

The Jakarta government has taken several steps to limit congestion during the major sporting event for this reason, including a huge expansion of the odd-even traffic rule throughout the duration of the games aimed at limiting the number of cars on the road. Despite the expansion’s tentative success, the Jakarta Transportation Management Agency (BPTJ) has decided it’s not enough so it is take other more aggressive tactics to combating traffic during the games — including closing several of the capital’s toll gates.

“The results of the BPTJ study show that it is not enough to simply extend the odd-even to more traffic arteries to support the smoothness of transportation during the Asian Games. Therefore, BPTJ recommends a package of three interrelated policies, ” BPTJ head Bambang Prihartono said yesterday as quoted by Tempo.

Bambang explained that the three policies are traffic engineering management, additional provisions for public transportation, and alternative traffic arrangements for class III, IV, and V freight vehicles.

Closing down some of the capital’s toll gates that lie between Central Jakarta’s Wisma Atlet Kemayoran — where most of the 15,000 some athletes participating in the games will be housed — and competition venues around the city is included under BPTJ’s proposed traffic engineering management policies, along with the expansion of the odd-even rule.

Bambang also said that athletes and officials related to the games would be able to use the busway lanes usually reserved for public transportation during the the competition.  

The transportation agency chief said that the targeted goal was for athletes to be able to make it from Wisma Atlet to any of the competition venues, or between any of the venues, within 30-34 minutes.

For the majority of Asian Games venues that are located in areas of Central and South Jakarta around Kemayoran and Senayan’s Gelora Bung Karno sporting complex, that might not be too impossible of a task. But for a few of the most far flung venues, like those in Taman Mini…. good luck.

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