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TU Delft - MSc Transport, Infrastructure, and Logistics Motivation Letter

rhnprks 1 / 1  
Mar 23, 2024   #1

I'm applying for the MSc Transport, Infrastructure, and Logistics program in TU Delft, and below is the draft of my motivation letter (prompts will act as a subheading that I will edit later in the final submission). The motivation letter itself should be 1000 - 1500 words.

Any feedback is welcome, thank you very much!


Your motivation for choosing this MSc programme
Accessibility to public transport has been a staple issue in Indonesia, particularly in the Jabodetabek Metropolitan Area (JMA) which is the biggest metropolitan area in South East Asia. Efforts to alleviate traffic congestion by accommodating First Mile Last Mile has been largely done in the capital city, while the surrounding ribbon development urban sprawls have hardly been given attention regarding this matter. Through my experience in handling the planning and construction of MRT Jakarta stations, I have been involved in the enhancement of the physical environment of the surroundings of the station to ensure smooth passenger experience, facilitating First Mile Last Mile. However, the same works cannot be done in urban sprawl areas of Jabodetabek, where the roads are largely unplanned and arbitrary physical intervention would bring about drastic changes that may disrupt the traffic network.

The lack of transport equity in Indonesia is a major problem that only allows the privileged to have ease of access to transport. It is with this matter in mind that I aim to commit myself to integrating my planning sensibilities from my architecture background and transport planning knowledge to lay the foundation of urban design concepts based on transportation planning for urban sprawl areas. By employing travel behaviour analysis to build this framework, I wish to bring about a balance between the technical aspects of physical enhancement planning and the effectiveness of these concepts in catering to the needs of their users. As such, I believe the MSc Transport, Infrastructure and Logistics of TU Delft would be the ideal place for me to fill in the knowledge gap I have.

Why you are interested in TU Delft and what you expect to find here
Apart from the Netherland's fame in the built environment and infrastructure, I am attracted to TU Delft's world-renowned engineering and built environment programs, the reputation of which have been evident from the institution's position in the Top 20 universities in the world for both programs throughout the years. I believe the institution would be the ideal place for me to collaborate with both fields, expanding my insight into the strategies that may accommodate the various trips resulting from human activities, essentially putting humans in the forefront of transportation planning.

A major part of my interest in choosing TU Delft's MSc Transport, Infrastructure and Logistics that sets itself apart from other similar programs is the emphasis on programming and machine learning, facilitating the study of simulations and travel behaviour. In my efforts to tackle the issue of First Mile Last Mile that motivated me to join this program, I wish to develop urban design regulations based on the behaviour of the vehicle-owning middle-class people in these areas and implement them in the possible decision-making process. I also find it important to be able to validate my strategies by employing traffic simulation to avoid any major disruption to the transport network. The program's comprehensive view into the discipline also allows me to see the bigger picture, and I believe that it would greatly benefit my future plan of rejoining my current company as the owner of the metro railway system in Jakarta. The wide breadth of knowledge I gain would be an invaluable asset as a project owner, and the sensibilities of a consultant would aid me in identifying what studies and analyses need to be funded.

Describe your hypothetical thesis project: what kind of project would you prefer? What would you want to explore? Please limit your answer to three possible topics

For my thesis, I would like to delve into the possibilities of enhancing the physical area of the ribbon development urban sprawl areas of the Jabodetabek Metropolitan Area of Indonesia. With these areas being largely untouched by public transport networks, I aim to assess the transit supply - demand gap of the areas, and build a framework on how to connect these areas to major transport nodes. An important point of this area of study is that these areas have developed without proper planning for over decades that lead to limited space, giving rise to major preference to private vehicles such as motorbikes. As such three items that need to be considered are as follow:

How to ensure that any physical enhancement will promote walking/cycling/public transport over private vehicle;
How to ensure that any physical enhancement would not disrupt the transport network;
How to minimise the need for land acquisition.

Another topic I am interested in working on would be the feasibility of conducting any physical enhancement in these urban sprawl areas. Considering that these areas have been mostly unattended for decades since its conception, improvements to the transport network may be considered futile by the local government. As such, I would like to conduct the Social Cost-Benefit Analysis of these enhancements, and assess at what point in time would the existing condition be deemed incapable of accommodating the ever-increasing transport demand and improvements are crucial to be carried out.

If this MSc programme has specialisation(s), which specialisation interests you the most and why?
With the aforementioned issue and thesis projects in mind, the specialisation that I believe would enable me to delve into the solution I wish to pursue is Transport Governance. A significant part of my goal is to be able to contribute to the transportation policy-making in Indonesia, and thus courses related to policy-making and decision-making are vital in my education journey. The course "Travel Behaviour Research'' would allow me to assess the kind of physical enhancement that caters to the needs and preferences of its future users and contribute to my thesis. Courses related to decision-making such as "Advanced Evaluation Methods for Transport Policy Decision-making" and "Multi-criteria Decision Analysis" would then facilitate my efforts to realise the design framework from my thesis, enabling me to turn them into regulations in my home country after graduation. In addition, considering that my final goal is in the form of an enhancement that prioritises pedestrians, I will be able to conduct the actual framework planning by utilising the knowledge I receive from the course "People, Movement and Public Space". However, I do believe that some electives outside the specialisation would be necessary, such as "Public Transport Demand and Network Planning and Operations" assuming that the physical enhancement would require public transport such as Demand Responsive Transit (DRT) in its planning, and "Cost-Benefit Analysis: Theory and Application" to work on my alternative thesis topic.

Summarise in a maximum of 250 words your BSc thesis work or final assignment/project. Please include information about the workload
In my final year of bachelor's studies, I undertook Final Design Project Preparation and Final Design Project courses. The preparation course is designed to have students work on a project proposal, wherein all desk studies, site inventorization, site analysis, and project programming are conducted. This course was worth 2 credits, and I was awarded an AB (3.5/4.0)

For the Final Design Project course, I designed a museum that explored the liberation of Asian - African nations from colonialism in the 20th century. The museum was designed to become an educational facility regarding the history of how liberation was achieved. The main challenge of the project was designing a building on a triangular site, in which all three sides must adhere to zero setback regulation in the area to maintain the urban corridor, all the while providing 20% of green area.

It was through this experience that I started to develop an understanding of how a planner may contribute to the urban area of the car-oriented city, mainly through two strategies I employed. The first was to accommodate the lack of safe urban public space in the area, solved through a ramp-like building massing reminiscent of TU Delft's library and Oslo Opera House. The second was to develop a canopied pedestrian path on all sides of the building, forming an arcade that reactivates the path and encourages walking. This project was worth 6 credits and I was awarded an A (4.0/4.0).
Holt  Educational Consultant - / 14,797 4780  
Mar 28, 2024   #2
The reviewer will not be familiar with what you mean by First mile Last Mile. I believe that is a uniquely Indonesian way of dealing with your country's traffic situation right? You should give an extended backgrounder on the program for the benefit of the reviewer. How does the program work? What aspect of the masters course that you want to take is relevant to this program? How you do plan to utilize it? Focus on how you can relate the 2 aspects into your motivation. That way the reviewer will have a clearer insight as to how the program of TU Delft will blend with the programs the Indonesian government is implementing.
OP rhnprks 1 / 1  
Mar 30, 2024   #3
hello, thank you very much for the feedback.
I'll be sure to revise my essay as per your comments. I would like to know however if the formatting of my essay is already appropriate. For a motivation letter (where the prompts are already clearly stated on the website), would I need a intro and conclusion?

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