The long-awaited fleet of 15 busses that will allow commencement of initial operations of the Sarbagita Mass Transit Bus System have finally arrived in Bali.
The 15 “new” busses were handed over by the central government in Jakarta to the province of Bali represented by vice-governor Anak Agung Gede Ngurah Puspayoga at a ceremony held on Wednesday, July 20, 2011.
The busses, painted blue and attractively branded, can carry 40 passengers in air-conditioned comfort. The access doors have been purposely elevated to make embarkation and disembarkation possible only from specially-built raised platforms located at pre-designated bus stops along the route.
Representing the Bali House of Representatives (DPRD-Bali) at the handover ceremony was the Secretary of Commission III, Gusti Ngurah Suryanta Putra - more commonly know as “Seno”. Commenting at the occasion, Seno said: “We hope the Sarbagita buses become one of the means of mass transportation to help overcome traffic jams in Bali.”
Seno continued, saying it remained for the provincial government of Bali to prepare all the systems needed to operate the buses in a professional manner in order that it can become a source of pride for the people of Bali. He suggested that if Bali is able to professionally manage the Sarbagita Bus System it will provide a positive image for the island. “If we are able to manage (the buses) well, the central government will provide additional help. Now the halts and a management board must be prepared by the Transportation Service,” said Seno.
Earlier and separately, the head of the Transportation, Telecommunications and Information Service for Bali, Made Santa, warned that the bus system would require government subsidies to remain in operation. The subsidies are made necessary because of the very the low fares of Rp. 3,500 (US$0.40) for adults and Rp. 2,500 (US$0.28) for students that will be charged for the new bus service.
The Bali Transportation Service is estimating that the new busses will begin formal operations approximately 2 weeks after the just completed delivery or sometime in early August,
The initial routes served by the new buses will run between Batubulan – Sanur – Central Parkir – Nusa Dua with stops fed by local transport feeder service.
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