Thursday 28 April 2016

Jakarta abandons 3-in-1, moving to 4-in-1 as congestion charging is delayed again

You may wonder what is going on in Jakarta as it seems on the cusp of introducing a Singapore style  ERP (Electronic Road Pricing) system, but as I wrote on 5 April, it has temporarily suspended its existing high-occupancy vehicle rule (known as 3-in-1, which is self explanatory) until May 14 because of concerns of child exploitation.

Now a website called Coconuts Jakarta (a new online news website chain that started in Bangkok) has suggested that 3-in-1 may be replaced by 4-in-1 in part because of the time that would be taken to implement congestion pricing in the city (the website suggests 1.5 years, which is a reasonably minimum in my view).   The Deputy Head of the Jakarta Transportation Agency,  Sunardi Sinaga, is quoted as saying it is one option once the 3-in-1 suspension is over, but 4-in-1 would only apply in the afternoon peak (presumably because the congestion is more severe during that time).  

As the report points out, unless the Police enforce laws against people paying others to sit in their vehicles (known as jokis - (jockeys)), which was a source of concern in the first place (as it is some of Jakarta's poorest seeking to make money from this, and some either rent their children out for this role or abandon them unaccompanied whilst they "jockey"), it wont make much difference.

Meanwhile, according to the Jakarta Post, the city has banned motorcycles on one area (Hotel Indonesia Traffic Circle from Jl. MH Thamrin to Jl. Merdeka Barat), which is surprising, as they are not the least efficient vehicles from road space terms, but has refuted rumours it may expand this ban further.  The report said the tender for ERP will be released later this year for implementation next year (which still seems ambitious to me).

It is not yet clear whether reliability of number plate recognition and accuracy of vehicle registration database details for enforcement have been addressed yet.

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