August 26, 2013

Public bicycles to support integrated system

Source: The Jakarta Post, Corry Elyda | Jakarta | Fri, August 23 2013, 12:02 PM

The Jakarta administration and its private partners are aiming to provide public bike services to support the integrated transportation system in the city and surrounding areas. Private partners are expected to cooperate with the banking sector to provide ready-for-use bikes in public places, including at bus and train stations for commuters to use to get to work. .

The country director of the Institute of Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP), a Jakarta administration consultant team for transportation, said on Wednesday in a discussion between the city administration, some banks and advertising companies regarding the service implementation plan.

Yoga said his institution had designed 100 stations providing bicycles for commuters to travel from public bus and train stations to areas such as Jl. Jendral Sudirman and Jl. MH Thamrin in Central Jakarta.

“There will be around 20 bikes at one station for people to access and the payment system is based on amount of time people use them,” he said.

ITDP estimated that the first 30 minutes would be free and one hour would cost Rp 2,000 (18 US cents), Rp 3,000 for 2 hours, Rp 20,000 for three hours and so on.

“We have to significantly increase the price when they use the bikes more than two hours to discourage people from using the bikes for long periods, so more people can use them,” he said.

Yoga said in order to avoid theft, the bikes would be equipped with a Radio Frequency Identification Device (RFID) that would identify the position of the bike after being removed from the booth.

“The identity of the users must also be recorded properly. Hence, the payment system should use either credit cards or smart cards,” he said.

Besides ITDP, the City Transportation Agency also planned to install bike stations, called bike feeders, in train stations and in Transjakarta shelters to office buildings in Central Jakarta.

Transportation Agency head Udar Pristono said the bikes would be dedicated for workers who commute by public transportation.

“After getting off from Transjakarta busses or trains, they can use the bikes,” he said.

Similar to the one proposed by ITDP, Udar said the commuters should also rent the bikes and provide collateral deposits.

Chairman of Bike to Work Community (B2W) Toto Sugito said he fully supported the plan but he was concerned about the amount of funds that would be invested.

“The program offered is so sophisticated and expensive. I am afraid the return will not be even,” he said.

Toto said he suggested that the city administration should start with a simple system first like the one in Bandung, West Java.

“The so-called bike sharing in Bandung is managed by a community with a manual system, so people simply rent the bikes,” he said.

Toto said however, that he still supported the modern transportation system. “We fully support the plan. We [B2W] will also help promote the services if needed,” he said.

Toto said the main problems faced by cyclists in the city were the usual ones, the number of motorists and their mischievous behavior on streets.

“It is useless if we have a special lane dedicated for cyclists if motorists do not respect it,” he said.

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