See Ya Later, Jakarta
Posted: March 1, 2022
Well, there goes the capital.
Indonesia’s capital city, Jakarta, has major problems. It’s polluted. People and cars cram the streets. Earthquakes shake the city. And, worst of all, it’s sinking! All of that has made government officials decide: “We’re out of here!”
Where are they going? To the island of Borneo. There, they plan to build a new capital city.
President Joko Widodo has big ideas for the new capital. He plans good public transportation. He wants more nature but fewer natural disasters. He hopes for a fresh start.
Will the move come at a price?
Of course. On paper, the new capital will require about $32 billion. That’s a serious chunk of change!
But the costs go deeper. What happens when you plunk down a 990-square-mile city on Borneo? Right now, the island is home to endangered orangutans, leopards, and many other kinds of wildlife. Many of these creatures need protection from habitat destruction. Some Indonesians worry the new city—and all its many people—will just bring the old city’s problems to a beautiful and rare part of the natural world.
The new city will be called Nusantara. Builders will have to construct government buildings and houses from scratch. As many as 1.5 million people will move in.
Experts guess that one-third of Jakarta could be under water by 2050. That sounds like a long time from now—but the ambitious builders will be racing the clock. They hope to have people moved to the new city by 2045.
Why? Every earthly city has problems. We look forward to a heavenly city planned and built by God.