Life in the Slow Lane

Unintended Consequences of Public Transit in Jakarta

Published in: Journal of Urban Economics (November 2021). doi: 10.1016/j.jue.2021.103411

Posted on on November 09, 2021

by Arya Gaduh, Tadeja Gracner, Alexander D. Rothenberg

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We study how TransJakarta, one of the worlds largest BRT systems, impacted commuting outcomes in Jakarta, Indonesia from 2002 to 2010. Using planned lines for identification, we find that BRT station proximity neither reduced vehicle ownership nor travel times, and it did not increase commuter flows. Instead, the BRT exacerbated congestion along service corridors. To evaluate welfare effects, we calibrate a quantitative spatial general equilibrium model with multiple congestible transport networks. Counterfactual simulations suggest that implementation improvements, including increasing the quality of expansion corridors, would significantly improve welfare with only modest costs.

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