Jakarta (ANTARA) - Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan targeted the light rail transit (LRT) project in Bali to start its groundbreaking in early 2024.

"We hope we can conduct the groundbreaking for Bali LRT in early 2024. The study had been carried out for a long time but was hampered due to the COVID-19 pandemic," he remarked after attending a limited meeting on Public Transportation Integration at the Merdeka Palace on Wednesday.

Pandjaitan noted that the LRT will cross I Gusti Ngurah Rai Airport and support passengers' movement from and to the airport. With no LRT, an accumulation of passengers will occur in 2026, considering that the airport serves around 24 million passengers annually.

The minister also stated that during the meeting, President Joko Widodo had ordered ministers to conduct further studies for the Bali LRT from the Ngurah Rai Airport to Seminyak or further to Canggu.

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"The plan is to open the LRT route from the airport to Seminyak and will continue to Canggu for possible, for around 20 kilometers. We are planning to charge a ticket price of around US$1 to US$2 for each airplane passenger, whether they use the LRT or not. Therefore, the public financing can support the LRT operation," he remarked.

During the meeting, the minister stated that President Widodo had pressed for the integration of LRT, MRT, and other means of public transportation to accommodate people in using public transport.

The head of state also pushed for accelerated development of public transportation connecting infrastructure with adequate facilities and infrastructure.

"For example, connecting bridge for Halim LRT station and High-Speed Train station, a connecting bridge for Manggarai Train Station with TransJakarta bus stop, a connecting bridge for Tanah Abang and Dukuh Atas stations, and others. We must ensure that each facility has sufficient lighting and protecting people from rain," he stated.

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Translator: Indra Arief P, Resinta S
Editor: Yuni Arisandy Sinaga
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