TOKYO, NNC - The development of the Jakarta-Surabaya bullet train will commence in 2019 by building a new track from Jakarta to Semarang, while routes from Semarang-Surabaya will still be using the existing track owned by State-Owned railway operater PT Kereta Api Indonesia (KAI).
The design of the Jakarta-Surabaya track is still under consideration by the government, whether to use an elevated or underground track.
"We have decided to start immediately. The complete study is currently underway with cooperation from the Department of Transportation. If the design is elevated or underground, the trip from Jakarta-Surabaya could be made within 5-6 hours," Vice President Jusuf Kala told Antara on Wednesday, June 13.
According to Kalla, a train trip from Jakarta-Surabaya currently requires 12 hours. If an elevated or underground track is constructed, the trip could be cut to 5-6 hours max.
"It could compete with airplanes. Now a days people prefer airplanes because its relatively cheaper and faster," he added.
The first phase will be up to Semarang where most of the tracks are already owned by KAI, said Kalla.
The Jakarta-Surabaya bullet train is constructed with a soft-loan financing method, with a 40-year loan and a 10-year grace period, with 0.5 percent interest.