North Jakarta to start canal construction by April
Agnes Winarti , The Jakarta Post , Jakarta | Fri, 01/23/2009 2:40 PM | City
North Jakarta plans to start construction of the East Flood Canal, a flood mitigation project affecting two subdistricts in the municipality, within the next two months.
"We will start construction of the canal in March, or April at the latest," newly installed North Jakarta Mayor Bambang Sugiono told The Jakarta Post on Thursday.
Bambang replaces outgoing mayor Effendi Anas.
Bambang said his office would cooperate with the North Jakarta District Court to settle disputes with land owners to speed up the canal project.
"We will consign compensation to the court so it can settle disputes, while we press ahead with construction," Bambang said.
Completing the canal project, he said, was one of his priorities.
So far, the North Jakarta municipal administration has procured 120 plots of land out of the 700 plots, or 78.5 hectares, at Marunda and Rorotan in Cilincing.
Land acquisition for the project has hit a snag, with many land owners demanding higher prices from the administration.
Disputes between residents over land ownership have also arisen.
Of the land being fought over, 19.1 hectares lies within the PT Kawasan Berikat Nusantara (KBN) industrial zone.
Squatters are squabbling 5.1 hectares of land.
Furthermore, 6.8 hectares is owned by residents demanding higher compensation, and 6.3 hectares belongs to the National Logistics Agency (Bulog).
North Jakarta secretary Sukarno played down land acquisition problems hampering the project.
"We haven't completed the acquisition because the budget has not been disbursed yet," Sukarno said.
"The dispute with KBN will be settled by the North Jakarta District Court," he said.
"We are still studying the Bulog case."
Besides the canal, Bambang said, the construction of an embankment along part of the coastline in North Jakarta was another priority of the administration. The embankment will help prevent flash flooding.
"I will also promote mangrove forest conservation, dengue fever eradication and programs to clean rivers," he said.
During the inauguration ceremony, Jakarta Governor Fauzi Bowo highlighted some homework Bambang should attend to during his tenure: including poverty eradication; buffer zoning at key sites, such as Plumpang fuel depot; and the development of tourist destinations like Ancol Dreamland Park and Sunda Kelapa Port.