State Enterprises Minister Dahlan Iskan says his ministry is ready to cooperate with Jakarta’s presumptive governor-elect, Joko Widodo, to build 24 roadway underpasses at railway crossings in the capital.
“The State Enterprises Ministry will help the Jakarta government to build underpasses, in which [train company] Kereta Api Indonesia will be the coordinator,” Dahlan said on Friday, as quoted by Antara news agency.
Dahlan said the underpasses would help alleviate congestion at crossings particularly prone to traffic jams.
The total length of railway lines serving several routes through Jakarta, Bogor, Depok, Tangerang and Bekasi is about 150 kilometers, dotted with 67 stations. There are around 48 railway crossings in Jakarta.
The Jakarta government, under the leadership of Governor Fauzi Bowo, was only able to eliminate four to six crossings in a given year. At that pace, it would take eight to 12 years to solve the problem that passing trains pose to drivers in the capital.
Dahlan said KAI would only initiate its cooperation with the Jakarta government after the new governor is inaugurated.
“It could be done after the inauguration of the new Jakarta governor,” Dahlan said. “Later, the public will feel the impact of the underpasses’ construction.”
Dahlan did not give a target for when the underpass work would be completed.
Prior to announcement of the plan, KAI had asked the Jakarta administration to accelerate its development of flyovers and underpasses at railway crossings following an increasing number of commuter lines.