Many Jakartans would probably agree how bad the traffic congestions have become in Jakarta. According to Forbes.com and cbsnews.com, Jakarta is one of the most congested cities in the world. Drivers spent one to six hours in their car every day; not only it is very tiring, but also inefficient for commuters to spend that much time on the road. One of the main causes of heavy congestion in Jakarta is the number of cars coming into the city. Most commuters still prefer to go to work by private vehicle instead of public transportation.
Aside from causing heavy traffic, overflowing usage of private vehicle has made Jakarta be one of the cities with unhealthiest air quality in the world. Carbon emissions from cars are the suspect of air pollution in Jakarta. Therefore, Governor of Jakarta, Anies Baswedan signed a Gubernatorial Instructions (INGUB) on 1 August 2019, instructing the provincial government to take several measures to decrease traffic congestion, as well as improving air quality in Jakarta.
Ngobrol Jakarta, an event presented by CoHive in collaboration with Jakarta Smart City, discussed this issue titled “The Expansion of Jakarta’s Odd-Even Traffic Rule and Effective Strategic Mobility (Perluasan Ganjil Genap Jakarta dan Strategi Mobilitas yang Efektif)”. Held on September 11th, 2019 at JSC Hive by CoHive, the event discussed the background behind odd-even traffic rule expansion, how it affects citizens of Jakarta and strategic ways to an effective mobility. Four speakers from startups and government agency shared their perspective as well as insights on how to move around the city easily, which as follows: P. Priyanto (Deputy of Traffic, Provincial Agency for Transportation DKI Jakarta), Muhammad Daud (Governor’s Team for Jakarta’s Development Acceleration), Andreas Aditya Swasti (Co-Founder of Nebengers and Head of Product Sejalan), and Marlin R. Siahaan (Waze Country Manager Indonesia).
Moderated by Gandrie Ramadhan (Indonesian Transportation Society Jakarta) Muhammad Daud explained about acceleration for sustainable mobility in Jakarta. He stated that the odd-even rule expansion is very necessary because Jakarta’s traffic causes economic loss as much as Rp 65 trillion/year and Jakarta is one of the most unhealthy cities in the world. The team, he said, has strategies and program to improve mobility, by having MRT, LRT, BRT expansion, integrated transport, and congestion pricing.
From another point of view which is inspired by the traffic issue in Jakarta, Andreas established Sejalan, a ride-sharing application that allows users to hitch a ride with others. What differs Sejalan from online taxis is that multiple people from different accounts can hitch the same ride. Andreas said it is cost-efficient, gives riders the opportunity to build friendships between one another, but most importantly, it is to help reduce traffic congestions in Jakarta. Sejalan was initially established as a startup company, Nebengers, which is now a subsidiary of Astra International.
GPS navigation software Waze has officially unveiled the latest navigation feature that has been equipped with odd-even traffic policy implementation of the Jakarta roads specially designed for users in Jakarta. Of all Waze apps that are used almost anywhere in the world, only Jakarta and Brazil are currently being awarded this addition of odd-even traffic policy feature.
The Transportation Agency, in addition, provided an in-depth explanation about odd-even traffic rule concept; the regulations, areas and time applied, the exceptions of vehicles that are not affected by the rule and the evaluation of its expansion trial run. According to them, the average speed of vehicles roaming around Jakarta increased by 13.09%, from 25.65 km/hour to 29.01% and the average travelling time decreased by 14.3%, from 16.92 minutes to 14.5 minutes. The number of vehicles coming to the city also shows a significant change. Odd-numbered vehicles coming to the city decreased by 22.92%, and even-numbered vehicles decreased by 27.55%.
Getting to use our private vehicle to go around is comfortable, but we have to look at the cost that it takes to have that kind of comfort. The benefits of having this regulation are not only to get there quickly but to have a healthy and quality life with the air we breathe in every day.