All Aboard: Bali's Railway Network Set to Break Ground Soon!

Despite earlier announcements from officials that construction of the Bali railway would begin at the start of the year, no progress was made. However, a new start date has been confirmed. Indonesia's Minister of Transportation, Budi Karya Sumadi, has stated that the groundbreaking for the Bali railway will commence in September 2024. At a press conference in Jakarta, he assured that despite the delay, all plans remain unchanged.
The first LRT route will connect Bali’s international airport to the central parking area in Kuta and later extend to Seminyak and Canggu, covering a total of 20 kilometers. The initial construction phase, backed by a South Korean company, will proceed in tandem with the ongoing feasibility study, which is still incomplete. The Bali railway network will be operated as a joint venture, with the province of Bali holding a 51% stake and the Indonesian government holding 49%.
The Minister of Transportation also stated, "In the long term, we plan to establish LRT train routes in Bali, connecting the airport to key high-traffic zones like Sunset Road, Legian, and Canggu".
He also noted that the development plan for the Bali LRT is nearing completion of the feasibility study, being conducted by the Korean National Railroad with grant support from Korea Exim Bank. The study commenced in January and is anticipated to conclude by April.
The selection of the initial route from the airport is motivated by the pressing need to alleviate traffic congestion. The growing influx of tourists poses a risk of gridlock in the area, which could also impact traffic on Sunset Road.

"If we don't construct the LRT, Ngurah Rai Airport will encounter challenges by 2026, as passenger numbers are projected to reach 24 million," remarked Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan. Balinese authorities concur, with Acting Governor Sang Made Mahendra also emphasizing the importance of prioritizing the construction of the line from the airport to Seminyak via Kuta’s Central Parking.
Construction of the first line is anticipated to span three to four years, provided there is no intervention from the new president, who may have differing infrastructure priorities for Bali. Notably, the new president has shown interest in revitalizing the North Bali airport project, as revealed during a meeting with constituents in northern Bali.
Sources: kompasrepublikdetikmerdeka
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