Jakarta, 23 February 2016 - The government is transforming the former Senayan Golf Driving Range located in Gelora Bung Karno (GBK) into a city forest as part of an overhaul of the sports complex in preparation for the 2018 Asian Games.
GBK sports complex management center president director Winarto said the driving range had officially shut down as of Feb. 1 and would be turned into a recreational green zone as stipulated in the regional planning regulations.
In response to criticism regarding the conversion of a commercial area into free public space, Winarto said the change would be beneficial not only environmentally but also financially as a conventional space in the middle of the city, which would also tie-in with the upcoming construction of the underground mass rapid transit (MRT) system with stations located nearby.
"We believe the greening will increase the overall value of the area," Winarto said on Monday during a press conference.
The renovation process would be spearheaded by the management center in partnership with the Environment and Forestry Ministry and the Jakarta city administration, he added.
The team will collaborate on converting the 4.6 hectares of land by planting exotic trees and other greenery within the area.
The government is still in the early stages of design and aims to start the plantation and construction processes by March. The area is expected to be ready by late 2017.
Environment and Forestry Ministry secretary general Bambang Hendroyono said the area was included in the ministry's plan to create 5,000 hectares of city forest across the country in the next five years.
Source: The Jakarta Post