PUPR Constructs Duplication Bridge Connecting New Capital-Balikpapan

PUPR Constructs Duplication Bridge Connecting New Capital-Balikpapan (photo: PUPR)

The Ministry of Public Works and Housing (PUPR) has recently introduced a noteworthy development in East Kalimantan by establishing a new connectivity project known as the duplication bridge of the short-span Balang Island bridge. This significant infrastructure addition serves as a vital link between the bustling city of Balikpapan and Penajam Paser Utara.

Danis Hidayat Sumadilaga, the Chairman of the Task Force for Infrastructure Development of the National Capital (IKN), emphasized the importance of the duplication bridge as a primary route for logistics transportation and a key access point to the National Capital (IKN) of Nusantara.

To quote Danis directly from his official statement on Tuesday (June 27, 2023), “This duplication bridge is crucial to complement the existing Balang Island Bridge and also to connect it effectively.”

Located just 500 meters from the long-span Balang Island Bridge completed in 2021, the duplication bridge is expected to play a significant role in reducing high traffic volume and facilitating efficient logistics transportation. It is an integral component of the comprehensive connectivity network leading to the IKN.

With a span of 511 meters, the short-span duplication bridge is constructed with a sturdy steel frame comprising four pillars in both the marine and land zones.

The construction project commenced in January 2023, following a contract valued at Rp471 billion, with the capable contractor PT Adhi Karya-Duta-Jakon (KSO).

Danis provided an update on the progress, stating, “The physical progress of the project has reached 11.6 percent, with a financial absorption of 25.5 percent.”

The East Kalimantan Regional Office of the Directorate General of Highways, Ministry of PUPR, oversees the construction of the Balang Island duplication bridge, ensuring its adherence to the highest standards of quality and safety.

Reiza Setiawan, the Head of the East Kalimantan Regional Office, shed light on the future connectivity plans, revealing that the duplication of the short-span Balang Island bridge will be seamlessly integrated with the IKN Access Toll Road Segment 5A, specifically the Simpang Tempadung-Balang Island Bridge stretch spanning 6.67 kilometers. The completion of this crucial segment is projected for 2024.

Elaborating on the larger network, Reiza explained, “The construction of the toll road towards the IKN is interconnected with the Balikpapan-Samarinda Toll Road. This road serves as an essential part of the extensive connectivity network, facilitating access to the Core Government Center (KIPP) of the Nusantara IKN.”

Moreover, authorities are optimistic that the duplication bridge’s introduction will significantly enhance the overall connectivity of the South Kalimantan Transverse Road, which plays a pivotal role as the primary logistics transportation route within Kalimantan Island.

Presently, vehicles traveling from Balikpapan to Penajam, as well as other cities such as Banjarmasin in South Kalimantan, must take an arduous detour of approximately 80 kilometers, resulting in a substantial travel time of 4 hours.

As an alternative, travelers have the option of utilizing a ferry, which takes around 1.5 hours for the crossing, excluding the additional waiting time.

The duplication bridge, once operational, promises to alleviate these challenges significantly by reducing the travel distance by approximately 30 kilometers, thereby enabling commuters to traverse the distance in a mere 1 hour, fostering improved accessibility and expeditious journeys.