Indonesian President Joko Widodo initiated the commencement of Light Railway Transport (LRT) on Wednesday, aimed at providing an advanced and integrated mass transport system for the people in the capital city and outskirt areas.
"It's about the time now to resume the delayed works. This project must not be delayed again as traffic jams in Jakarta is severe already," the president said at the project's groundbreaking ceremony, referring to the monorail mass rapid transport project initiated in 2004 and in 2013 that were eventually canceled due to problems with the investors.
To assure the completion of the LRT project, Widodo has issued a presidential decree No. 98/2015 that stipulates the mass public transport project serves Jakarta, Bogor, Depok and Bekasi.
The first phase of the project was expected to finish before the Asian Games sports event scheduled to be held in the capital city from August to September in 2018.
The initial phase would serve 24.2-kilometer routes from eastern part of the capital city of Cibubur, Cawang to Dukuh Atas, a station located at the heart of the business district in Jakarta.
The following route would serve public settlement area of Bekasi Timur in West Java province to Dukuh Atas that spans 17.9 kilometers, said Train Director General Hermanto of the Transportation Ministry.
Some 23.817 trillion rupiah (about 1.6 billion U.S. dollars) of funds has been allocated to finance the project. Part of the funds would be retrieved from the state budget. The project is carried out by state-run construction firm Adhi Karya.