Bonn: German Institute of Development and Sustainability (IDOS)
Bus rapid transit (BRT), an innovative transit solution from the Global South, represents a more affordable and easier to implement mass transit mode in comparison to railway systems. Despite these advantages, many cities struggle to implement BRT due to different challenges from the need of an institutional framework and financing to the managing of competing transport modes and public opposition from car users and informal bus operators, as well as the design of BRT components (e.g. the quality of the infrastructure, vehicles and service). When these challenges are not solved, already implemented BRT systems struggle to successfully perform and expand their network to increase the service coverage. This paper studies the case of Jakarta’s BRT, which has become the largest BRT network in the world and reaches 82% of the city’s population. This study shows how Transjakarta has been able to face the different challenges for the phasing-in, good performance and expansion of its network, and presents lessons for the future of BRT within an integrated transit network that includes other mass transit modes, as well as formerly informal feeder services.