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Keeping Bali's Vehicles on the Level

Government Officials Explain Why Overpasses, Suspended Highways and Monorails Won't Work in Bali.

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The Deputy Coordinating Economic Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development, Dr. Ir. Bambang Susantono, told a national conference on transportation meeting in Bali on October 18, 2007, that building overpasses and elevated roadways in Bali was not a viable means of overcoming traffic congestion problems on the island. Susantono, who is also the Chairman of the Indonesian Transportation Community (TPI), told the meeting that social and cultural beliefs held by the majority of Bali's residents make overpasses an inappropriate means of addressing traffic issues.

Saying he did not agree with building overpasses in Bali, Susantono told the Bali Post said a more practical solution would be to upgrade the present road system and build underpasses, rather than building elevated roadways which unacceptably pass over and above the heads of the local Bali-Hindu populations, their communities and places of worship.

No Easy Solutions

Susantono warned his audience that there are no road-building solutions that will satisfactorily resolve Bali's growing traffic problems. To do this, he insisted, Bali must build a mass transit system that is safe, comfortable, affordable, and operates on a fixed and convenient schedule.

Such a mass transit system would have to be constructed so it could serve both local residents and tourist visitors to Bali.

Speaking to the conference, Susantono explained that he does not accept the popular perception that mass transit is incompatible with Balinese society, insisting a well-planned and affordable public transport system would earn the patronage of the people of Bali.

At the same conference in Kuta, Indonesia's Minister of Culture and Tourism, Jero Wacik echoed Susantono's sentiments saying that better roads are needed in Bali while discounting the appropriateness of suspended highways and monorail systems for the Island of Bali.

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