Jakarta is the world’s third largest urban area with 22 million people(Note 1) and the second largest metropolitan area with 26.6 million people
Jabotabek is also one of the world’s fastest growing urban areas and the prospects are for even stronger growth. The United Nations expects Indonesia to add 90 million people to its urban areas over the next 40 years. If Jabotabek gets its present share of Indonesian urbanization, its population would double.
Jabotabek’s Unmanageable Problems: For already crowded Jabotabek and its even more crowded core of Jakarta, this is bad news. Jabotabek covers nearly the same land area as Paris (more than 1,000 square miles), but has more than twice the population. And unlike Paris, with its well-planned streets and multi-story buildings, much of Jabotek is made up of low-slung, terribly crowded makeshift slums.
The nation’s leaders think they have an answer: move the capital. President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has called upon the government to prepare a study of the options. The entire national government could be moved completely out of Jakarta, or most of the government functions could be moved to another part of Jabotabek. Traffic is high on the list of ills that the President justifiably cites.