Jakarta, CNN Indonesia – Not infrequently we find Jakarta toll roads are jammed at certain hours, while traffic flow in other segments relatively smoothly. Conversely, in certain times also, the road that was originally jammed was in a state of quiet or quiet.

This condition also applies in non-toll roads.

At other moments, the streets are jammed at a certain time it will unravel when there are officers who keep and regulate the flow at the points of the knot.

In this case, I certainly do not mean to say that the problem of congestion can be solved only through regulation and law enforcement alone. However, the simple conclusion that can be drawn from the two illustrations above is that toll roads and non-toll roads still have enough space to prevent traffic jams.

In other words, the two cases above indicate that the problem of congestion is not just a matter of inadequate road capacity.

However, why are the government’s efforts to break down congestion more focused on road capacity issues?

These efforts are more often focused on the breakthrough problem of adding road capacity, either by creating new roads or increasing the old road capacity – horizontally or vertically.

Or, for example, a reduction in the number or volume of vehicles, for example by odd-even settings, hour limits (3 in 1), or restrictions on certain types of vehicles such as rickshaws.

In addition, rearrangement of urban space through the distribution of social activity spaces such as business areas, offices, entertainment / recreation, settlements, etc. – groups, to more easily manage the flow of traffic, so as to control the volume density of vehicles.

Both efforts above, in certain conditions and in the short term, are relatively effective to break down the bottleneck.

It’s just that, along with the effort to overcome the congestion, simultaneously the business spaces, offices, residential, recreation also grows widely, both horizontally and vertically. Similarly, the number of vehicle production and population growth are affected by birth and migration.

Of course these growths can not be prevented and then go beyond the growth of space or road capacity. In the end, the growth of traffic spaces is not proportional to the growth rate of all these, unable to pursue them due to space or land constraints and available costs.

However, keep in mind that all social activities, including traffic, are always related to “space and time”.

During this time we are more concerned with the problem of “space” so that efforts to parse traffic jams are always only focused on the use of space, whether it is the addition or arrangement of space, be it the road or other social activity space.

Likewise, the arrangement of the network or the connectedness of all node points, whether it is the area of ​​activity, the points of the road node, the connecting path between the points of the node, and the current from one point to the other, as a whole, each line is not loaded beyond its capacity.

This all shows that our attention is still focused on space issues, and few are focused on time. So far, the question of time is only limited to the smoothness or travel time.

The issue of that time has not been studied as deep and deep as when discussing space or inter-space connectivity issues.

Or, more precisely, we only get around space and time on the road network, but not or have not been wasting time for spaces other than highways.

This is indeed an irony. At the time of the digital era gave rise to the nature of immediacy and synchronization, traffic actually makes us hard because of the congestion that is getting crowded and uncontrollable.

We may be able to reflect on one-door public services or online services such as e-banking, online stores, online taxi, online travel. These services can make space and time constraints no problem.

They make our lives easy, fast and efficient. Not only that, they actually also participate in reducing traffic congestion.

This is what we have not thought about in terms of congestion. How big is the contribution of these online services in reducing congestion.

Of course the need for further studies, but certainly they have managed to compress the space and time.

Note for Online Application

One thing to keep in mind as well, online apps are not always profitable or ease of life. It needs to be understood in advance to be able to use or use it wisely.

For example, applications such as Google Map or Waze. We can choose the roads that can make faster to the destination based on the direction of online applications, can see the streets are jammed and not jammed.

Only, online application has not helped to eliminate congestion.

The reason is, when knowing there is congestion along our route, then we can avoid by choosing the route offered by the online application.

However, as we move toward the recommended streets, simultaneously also some other riders – who by chance avoid congestion in that particular area or the same area – take the same alternative path.

As a result, on the way, the volume of vehicles in this alternative route is also solid and increasing.

We forget that one of the main characters of the online world is “immediacy and synchronization”, causing riders to also use the route suggested by Google Map or Waze earlier.

This is as expressed by Nobel laureate 2017, Richard Thalet the Behavioral Economics expert, that we often think irrationally, which he calls Herd Thinking.

If there is one rider turn left (out of the streets are jammed), then in droves other riders come to the left. Like a book, which is labeled best seller, then the number of sales will continue to soar. Thus, this digital facility also contributes to the rapid infectious disease of “talkative”, thus causing congestion.

Indeed, information and communication technology in the digital age, can sometimes be profitable, but can also harm. It all depends on how we understand and wisely react to it.

In this case, we still need digital literacy.

Back to the problem of overcoming traffic congestion. Based on the above description, it appears that efforts have been focused more on the issue of “space” – about how to deal with limited space and connectivity between space activities, but have not paid much attention to the issue of “time” – that is, how we deal with time.

It is time we question why we have to flock to the office at 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, or why children study at school busy at 07.00 – 13.00.

Let us give our attention to get around the “time”, because all human activity is always in “space and time”.

We are connected not only by space, but also by time.

Source Ruddy Agusyanto, CNN Indonesia