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The Route Less Traveled

Bali Post Survey Show Little Public Enthusiasm and Support for New Sarbagita Bus System


Bali News: The Route Less Traveled
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(8/28/2011)

Bali Post has conducted a written and phone survey with results showing widespread disaffection with the new Sarbargita Mass Transit Bus System launch in mid August.

While there is a high level of desire to “try” the new buses, the general consensus seems to be that few feel they are in a position to have any practical use for the new bus system. The public is also calling on the management of the bus to undertake an evaluation study in order to improve the public’s willingness to take a public bus. People are also calling for concrete information on routes, schedules and guarantees that the buses will arrive on schedule.

When the public was asked if the operation of the Sabargita Bus System has provided a convenience for the public in terms of on-time performance, low cost and comfort - only 22% of those responding replied in the affirmative.

The majority of respondents to the Bali Post Survey felt the Sarbagita System offers no guarantee of arriving on time at their place of employment.

43% of the respondents stated that the buses that travel Bali’s main protocol routes offer no certainty as to schedule, with the the public still confused as to the location of the designated bus halts. Respondent said they were uncertain on the rules of operation, for instance if passengers were only able to embark and disembark at the official halts.

More than 35% of the respondents said they had no knowledge of the operational details of the new bus system. The same respondents said they had “heard of the bus system” but had not had an occasion to use the system.

When asked about their desire to use the Sarbagita Bus System, 49% said they would consider riding the bus if it was managed well with a clear set of rules. According to the Bali Post, the currently high level of private vehicle usage in Bali mandates that in order to be effective any public transport system needs to be well designed with a viable route network. If the public service is based solely on low cost and comfort the new system will lack effectiveness.

46% of the respondents said they had no desires to use the Sarbagita Bus System. The segment doubted the professionalism of the new services, saying they felt it would only represent an added burden on the provincial budget. Among those not interested in using the new bus system was an expression of the belief that the new bus system was focused on the acquisition and maintenance of the buses, but not on providing a useful public service. These same respondents to the survey said they did not thing the system would help Bali overcome traffic congestion.

Only 5% had no response to the survey’s question regarding their preparedness to ride the new bus system.

The Bali Post concluded that the public wants the new bus system to cover the entire region; the system’s management to provide detailed information on operations; the addition of more bus halts; and guarantees of on-time performance. The survey respondent also said that civil servants should be obligated to use the new busses and that students be given free access to the bus system.

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