Among the many long gestating plans to tame Jakarta’s terrible traffic, few have seen as much discussion but as little action as the government’s attempts to implement an electronic road pricing (ERP) system similar to the one used in Singapore. But Vice Governor Sandiaga Uno thinks his administration will be able to accomplish it by next year.
“Now we’re entering to the auction stage of the project, by 2019 it will be implemented in Jakarta,” Sandiaga said at City Hall today as quoted by Kompas.
His comments came after he held a meeting with the ambassadors from Sweden and Austria to discuss his administration’s ERP plans since companies from both countries have expressed interest in joining the tender for the project.
ERP systems charge drivers passing through gates in certain parts of the city using an automatic system utilizing receivers placed on cars.
Head of Jakarta Transportation Department Andri Yansyah said that the auction winner would to be announced in October of this year and that the winning bidder would be in charge of constructing ERP gates on the major thoroughfares of Jalan Jenderal Sudirman and Jalan Medan Merdeka Barat.
Andri said construction on the project would be implemented in two phases, adjusting for the mass rapid transit (MRT), which is scheduled to begin operations in March 2019. ERP gates would be first placed around the Hotel Indonesia and Senayan roundabouts.
That may be somewhat optimistic. The Jakarta ERP project was first initiated in 2012, but since then little has been accomplished on the project save for two test gates that were built years ago. A serious attempt at actually implementing the system has never been undertaken, and officials in the previous administration said they were worried it might never happen due to a lack of willingness on the part of stakeholders.
In 2016, former Jakarta Governor Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama pushed for the government to manage the ERP system so that its profits could be funneled directly into public transportation (as opposed to a private company managing and profiting from it, as was originally planned), but he admitted that bureaucratic problems could push the project back for some time.