Lenny Tristia Tambun
The Jakarta Park and Cemeteries Agency said on Friday that it had borrowed land from private owners to widen sidewalks in several areas of the city.
Catharina Suryowati said her office had borrowed land from the Arya Building on Jalan Ridwan Rais and from Mahardika Karya Artha on Jalan Sabang, both in Central Jakarta, to widen the sidewalks there.
“The widening of the sidewalks along Jalan Kebon Sirih and Jalan Ridwan Rais on the western side has been ongoing since early this month,” Catharina said.
She added that the project was meant to improve pedestrian safety and comfort, given that only 20 percent of the city’s sidewalks met required safety and ergonomic standards. On the other 80 percent of sidewalks across Jakarta, pedestrians typically have to vie for space with illegally parked vehicles and street hawkers, as well as dodge obstacles such as open drains.
Catharina said her office planned to build a five-meter-wide sidewalk along the entire length of Jalan Gajah Mada and Jalan Hayam Wuruk, running between Harmoni in Central Jakarta and Kota in West Jakarta.
The construction of sidewalks on Jalan Sabang, Jalan Cikini Raya, Jalan Gajah Mada and Jalan Hayam Wuruk will start in August, she said.
The sidewalks will also have potted plants and meter-high steel poles set 30 centimeters apart to prevent motorcyclists from driving on the pavement and drivers from parking their cars there.
“We hope that those areas can be re-arranged like the sidewalks on Singapore’s Orchard Road,” Catharina said.
The project is expected to cost Rp 18.75 billion ($2 million), with Jalan Gajah Mada and Jalan Hayam Wuruk each allotted Rp 6 billion. Jalan Cikini will get Rp 5 billion, Jalan Sabang Rp 750 million and Jalan Kebon Sirih and Jalan Ridwan Rais will get a combined Rp 1 billion.
Catharina said her office was also working to repair sidewalks along Jalan Sudirman, Thamrin, Kebon Sirih, Wahid Hasyim and HOS Cokroaminoto.