Timeline: Intended – an outline vision has been agreed
The framework for UAM services in Jakarta was developed in July 2019 in an official collaboration between the London The Aviary Project, and Empasco, a non-profit organization.
Through analysis on the city in terms of its mobility statistics, neighborhoods with high-value points of interest, and existing helipads, the team identified various categories of routes that UAM can bring the most value in Jakarta, focusing on air shuttle and air taxi use cases:
• Airport to City – Perhaps the first set of UAM routes that can be implemented with proven demand and willingness to pay, with routes between Soekarno-Hatto International Airport and the helipad near Manggarai.
• Suburbs to City – Centered on transporting commuters in and out of the city every day, routes can be set up from the suburbs such as Depok and Bekasi to Manggarai and Jatinegara railway stations, respectively, which have helipads in the vicinity.
• Wealthy Areas to Business District→ Targeting upper-middle class and above, wealthy Jakartan neighbourhoods such as Kebayoran Lama can be connected to the business district near Google’s Indonesia offices. Landing infrastructure for this route already exists on top of Pondok Indah Mall and Helipad Polda Metro.
• Center to Marina – Connecting the central districts with the marina and the port, routes can be developed between the helipad on Hotel Borobudur and several locations along the coast. This category has the potential to transport large amounts of cargo as well, increasing the efficiency of payload transfer from the port to the southern parts of the city.
• Marina to Thousand Islands – Finally, there are routes that link up the coast of Jakarta with the Thousand Islands in the Java Sea for tourism and payload delivery purposes. The swift connection offered from the mainland to these islands may spur growth in tourism & entertainment, adding value to Jakarta’s economy.
Assuming an eVTOL of 2–5 passenger capacity, low to mid social acceptance of Jakartans, and a mid to high infrastructure network coverage around the city (~75 vertiports), we can estimate a UAM market size (only air shuttle and air taxi) for Jakarta between USD500–900 million with high uncertainty about how fast UAM routes can be established, consumer demand, infrastructure availability, and the effect of weather on flight operations. To offer a competitive service in contrast to other modes of transportation, UAM will likely need subsidies from the government during its initial years.
However, it is noteworthy to understand that there will be other significant economic and societal benefits that consolidate the market size introduced here. eVTOL air ambulances will save countless lives, for example, if they are allowed to land on highways to extract patients locked in traffic. eVTOL cargo vehicles may remove a magnitude of vehicles from the streets for less-than-truckload payloads. If congestion can be reduced by UAM, a portion of the USD7.4 billion economic loss due to traffic in Jakarta can be positive and added to the overall well-being of the city’s inhabitants. Thus, implementing UAM solutions to a city such as Jakarta will in effect be financially more viable compared to attempting to solve the city’s congestion through conventional methods.