My friends in Singapore sometimes take their buses and trains for granted. While Singapore’s train system did suffer a series of serious glitches last year, the country’s transportation system largely remains of a high standard. I have to admit, though, that this view is coming from someone who was born and raised in a city with a close-to-non-existent transportation system. Oh Jakarta, I feel so embarrassed for you.
Would you believe that a city with a similar population density to Tokyo has no underground train system? The closest we have is TransJakarta, which is a bus rapid system. TransJakarta has been in operation for 7 years, and yet it still has a lot of ground to cover. This is where the local bus companies, including Kopaja (first photo) and Metro Mini (second photo), come in. It’s worth noting that these buses stop wherever they want. Also, they never close up their doors. Typically, a bus fee collector would (literally) hang around one of the doors. Who says safety always comes in first?
There is saying that goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. This would make a terrible motto of Jakarta’s government officials. Honestly, it would be really sad for Jakarta to fail in realizing its potential.