BSD City, Indonesia – A Sustainable Response to Rapid Urbanization

Indonesia is projected to have 32 million people seeking housing in its urban areas by 2030. In parallel, the nation’s demographic profile is in transition, with a growing working-age population but also a larger, aging group with specific needs and spending power. As the nation’s capital and one of the most rapidly growing cities in the world, Jakarta’s development progress will be the focal point of Indonesia’s rapid urbanization.

Consequently, Indonesia urgently needs innovative, creative and sustainable property solutions. We need to prioritize the management of natural resources and preserve equitable standards both for established communities and the ones we create.

BSD City, Office Park © Sinar Mas Land

BSD City: A Pioneering New Urban Settlement

The self-contained satellite city of Bumi Serpong Damai (BSD), located in the South-West of Jakarta, is the realization of over 20 years of meticulous planning. The city’s development is already in its second phase and shall continue up until 2020, with a third and final phase set to be completed by 2035. This cityscape of 6,000 hectares is setting a new standard for modern living and is the hallmark of planned integrated townships in Indonesia.

BSD City’s development plan incorporates five toll roads, two of which are already in place with feeder links to busways for both local and capital city access. In addition, a double track rail connection has been implemented for regional transport. A dedicated water treatment plant and reliable power infrastructure ensure that the utility requirements of its inhabitants are met. In addition, the city’s purpose-built nursery ensures that the landscape flourishes in tandem with rapid urban development. Furthermore, there are over 65 educational establishments and three hospitals, a variety of markets, entertainment centers, sports and leisure facilities.

BSD City focuses on four key areas: climate (including pedestrian comfort), water, waste and energy management. Our mission is to preserve the natural beauty of the Cisadane river basin, ensure that BSD is an environmentally concious city of the future for the benefit of all, embrace the needs of adjacent traditional village communities and new residents and seek an alternative to city congestion and pollution.

Energy, Waste and Water: Tackling the Biggest Challenges of our Time

Topics of energy, water, food security and climate change are increasingly important in today’s rapidly urbanizing world. Some estimates suggest that Indonesia could cut as much as 15 per cent of its energy demands by 2030 through energy efficient buildings. Sinar Mas Land’s commitment to low impact, low energy strategies is demonstrated by BSD City, which contains over 400 hectares of green space and parks, contributing to effective water retention and air quality.

The provision of adequate water is often recognized as the next global challenge. While Jakarta relies primarily on the use of wells, BSD City has the potential to attain almost complete water independence and net zero potable water waste via the use of water management systems and extensive greening. Filtering and treating wastewater for reuse in sanitation, road cleaning and irrigation has been highly effective.

The built environment is a massive consumer of energy. Among other countries in Asia, Indonesia’s reliance on energy from low-cost coal contributes significantly to greenhouse gas emissions and global warming. Over the lifespan of a building, considerable energy can be wasted through inefficient design. On top of this, there is the cost of fuel for the rising numbers of private vehicles on traffic-congested roads.

We address these challenges through the provision of reliable public transport, pedestrian sidewalks and bicycle lanes that offer cost-effective alternatives to the private vehicle. Energy efficient buildings, oriented to avoid East and West elevations with reflective roof surfaces, help minimize solar impact and reduce the urban heat island effect. Such measures also channel local wind effectively for pedestrian comfort during the day, along with shade from tree-lined streets. Creativity in design can generate natural ventilation in multi-storey buildings. Meanwhile the use of renewable energy – in particular solar – and the use of energy efficient building materials ensure further savings.

BSD City Render © Sinar Mas Land

Championing Sustainable Master Planning

In developing Asian cities of the future, there is an emerging trend to reduce the dominance of multi-lane streets and private vehicles. Asian cities are also aiming to avoid monolithic land use and limit suburban sprawl. At Sinar Mas Land we strongly believe in achieving these goals. We envision and design comprehensive master plans that incorporate placemaking studies, building orientation to reduce solar impact, detailed transportation and circulation analysis and encourage the inclusion of local hubs. Additionally, we create a high ratio of public spaces with extensive tree and plant cover and ensure ample room for recreation.

Central to the development of each phase of BSD City is the establishment of comprehensive supporting facilities for inhabitants. These facilities are selected with lifestyle synergy in mind. They include global university campuses, hospital districts, enterprise zones, residential villages, retail and entertainment recreational areas. All of these facilities are destinations in themselves and are the antithesis of repetitive single use land developments of the past.

Our planning studies include concepts such as walkability – creating easy access on foot or bicycle for short journeys, to local nodes comprising schools, local retail and services, which are connected to other hubs via public transport.

Seizing the Urban Moment

Over the next decade we expect to build 150,000 new homes in BSD City alone, as the garden city grows to over one million residents. At this level of responsibility, it is essential that we remain open, accessible and transparent.

With the rapidly growing urban population in Greater Jakarta, our city needs to be ready to accommodate this. We ask ourselves whether we have made the right planning and investment that is, or will be, aligned to this movement? The welfare of the city’s current and future residents are at stake. The decisions we make today regarding urban services, infrastructure and environment sustainability will determine our future. Now is the time for us to let go of our short-term tunnel vision, and instead to adopt a future-focused mindset so that our children and businesses can grow and prosper seamlessly in a healthy living environment.

Participants at the New Cities Summit will have the option of taking part in an optional site visit to BSD City on Thursday June 11.