Sunday, December 26, 2010

Old Building at Letjen Suprapto Street No. 1 near "mBerok" River Bridge

Possibly, this building is the second building that prominently visible from mBerok River Bridge after the existence of the former of "Societeit the Harmonie" Building. Obviously, these two buildings are becoming a pair of opening landmark when somebody take a walk from mBerok River Bridge to enter old city conservation area from the east-end side of Pemuda Street.

The entry facade is placed facing to "Societeit the Harmonie" and elaborated with strong vertical masonry louver patterns on its windows. Similar facade details are placed at building west corner-end side and it placed in slightly tilted orientation to facing "mBerok" River Bridge. With reference to an online literary notes, this building have originally identified as De Handelsvereeniging, an office of Trade Association and the Chamber of Commerce.

Seemingly, it looks like an empty building. Except maybe its east-end side part of the building that is partially occupied by a Lawyer Office. From "mBerok" River point of view, the existence of messy street vendor's belongings are become daily distractions that covers the real facade appearance of this building. It is become daily scenery today that the main corner of this building now is just becoming parking area of some 'becak' drivers who are waiting for their passengers. A 'becak' parking area under the empty facade flag pole.........

Friday, December 24, 2010

Gedung Bank Mandiri near "mBerok" River Bridge

Nowadays, Gedung Bank Mandiri at "mBerok" is one of the old colonial buildings that is prominently visible from "mBerok" River Bridge. Mberok Bridge it self is a bridge at the end corner of Pemuda street and connecting it to the famous old city area. The building is built during Dutch Colonial Era and originally is also known as "Societeit de Harmonie" or a kind of Dutch Social Club Building. Other source mentioned that this building was formerly owned by Factorij der Nederlandsche Handel Maatschappij.

The building is situated at the crossroad of Letjen Suprapto Street and Empu Tantular Street. From Empu Tantular Street point of view, the building facade is partially hidden under the shadow of an old lush tree near the entrance canopy. A dominant row of colonial style of arch shaped openings is strongly visible from Letjen Suprapto Street.

Today, the building is still remaining alive in its current function as a Bank Office, and become a kind of visual marker that somebody starting to enter the old city conservation area.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

An Old Building at Bandarharjo Selatan Street No.8 Semarang

Latest owner of the building is PT Sucofindo a government-owned company. The building is also known as former PT Mega Eltra that was also a government-owned trading company. During Dutch Colonial Era, this building is known as ""Kantoor van handelsonderneming Lindeteves-Stokvis te Semarang". A headquarters of N.V. Lindeteves-Stokvis, one of Dutch Colonial's big trading company. The building is one of many old buildings from Dutch Colonial Era that is classified as an old heritage building. Obviously, this building is located directly in front of former of Vereenigde Javasche Houthandel Maaschappijen building (which is described in previous posting in this blog).

Currently, the building is under severe damages. It is very obvious that many of parts of its facade is already broken. Even though the overall looks in damaged appearance, the original building shapes are remain strongly identified. A strong symmetrical shape that are ended with strong appearance of fortress-like towers in one of its end-corner. The building supposed to be a nice looking building in past era that was become like face-to-face pair with the Vereenigde Javasche Houthandel Maatschappijen building in front of it.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Vereenigde Javasche Houthandel Maatscappijen Building at Bandarharjo Street

Former Vereenigde Javasche Houthandel Maatscappijen Building is situated in Bandarharjo Selatan Street, part of Semarang Sea Harbor Area. This building is former Dutch Colonial Trade Office in related with teak wood trading activities during old colonial era. Currently, the building is owned by a local government owned company. The building should be a witness how busy and the important of Semarang sea harbor during Dutch Colonial Era.

The building is nicely set-up in a great exposure in the middle of open green landscape with small buildings surrounding it in backyard area. The building nice set-back against the street always makes this building look in its wholeness in shape. A formal building shape with strong symmetrical shape compositions.

Nowadays, the appearance of this building might be become a main landmark of Bandarharjo Selatan Street. Hundred years old icon that relatively still existed and survived, a remaining old building which is part of old trading activities in old Semarang Sea Harbor.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Central Post Office Building of Semarang

Central Post Office Building at Semarang maybe is one of old building from Dutch Colonial Era that is still remaining in its original functions today. The building is situated in good exposure at the north-end side of Pemuda Street with large streets and street park in front of the building. A glimpse of old city conservation area come in sight when we stand in front of the building to facing north side area.

It not look as busy as past era when virtual communication was no longer exist and found very dominant in current world. But, the office activities inside the building is still running to make somebody is connected with others in other place and thing from this town is well delivered to other remote places. The activities that is still happen everyday and make this building still exist and alive with its functions and its old appearance.

This Central Post Office Building is located not far from Pasar Johar commercial area and its mean that it is situated not far from former 'Alun-alun' the Old City Square. Most of Central Post Office Building in capital cities in Java is located not far from originally the old city center. Seemingly, The Post Office Building is always placed as an important object in the center of town area, because post office is part of important communication facility that is should be easily found and accessible.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Remaining Architectural Old Details at Kampung Kauman

Kampung Kauman is an old traditional Muslim Community settlement that is situated near the Main Mosque in the Cities at Java Island. Most probably, the settlement old is almost as similar as the Main Mosque itself. According to the original old 'city planning' order, Kampung Kauman is usually located in the west side of the 'Alun-alun' as the Old City Square that refer to the direction of Mecca City at The Arabia Peninsula.

There are some remaining old houses and buildings that captured in the pictures here might be could be used as reflection of old time glimpse about how Kampung Kauman and Masjid Kauman surrounding areas are look like.

Today, The Kampung is no longer situated in a spacious open city landscape, since 'Alun-alun' as The Old City Square is already gone and transformed into many of commercial buildings. Now, The Kampung physically is remaining as like typical dense urban settlement in the City. Maybe, only The Kauman Mosque remains exist as 'historical and cultural pair' and still stand as its origin until today

Monday, December 6, 2010

Masjid Kauman, Remaining Building from the Lost Old City Square

Currently, Kauman Mosque (Masjid Kauman) is identified as an old large mosque that is situated in the middle of busy commercial area of Pasar Johar. Originally, this mosque was a part of 'Alun-alun' complex, a Javanese architectural term that related with a very large public open square as a kind of city center. Nowadays, this large open square could not be found anymore, since it already converted into many of commercial buildings. And this old city center is already lost and maybe changed to other part of the city.

The Kauman Mosque is noted in the history that closely related with the early origin of Semarang City. Most probably, major renovation works have already eliminated most of its original physical appearances. At least we can still identify its unique roof with its 'Meru'-like shape that is decorated with sculptural floral shapes as its main crown. A typical roof top detailing that always found in many old Javanese Mosque, particularly in Central and East Java Regions.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Pasar Johar, a Building With Hundred of Octagonal Skylights

Currently, the building of this traditional central market building looks as a messy old building that surrounding by other new buildings. From day to day Pasar Johar always surrounding by large numbers of peoples who involve in traditional daily trading activities, because Pasar Johar might be the remaining largest traditional market in Semarang City where traditional traders meet with the customers.
When we come to enter the inside of the building, I think we can directly recognize 'the beauty' of the building. Under the huge large flat concrete roof we can find spacious internal spaces that consist of two floors with large atrium in the middle. Since the building is designed and built during Dutch Colonial Era, this building should be one of the largest modern market building in that era. The design was generated in modern approaches.

There are specific details we can find here are the interesting octagonal shaped roof skylights and many of typical structural columns with mushroom shapes that support the large flat concrete roof. If we zoom the building in from "Google Map" we can calculate that there are more than a hundred of octagonal skylights on the roof of Pasar Johar. Skylights that promote tropical daylights come through to the internal space of market and also enable natural air circulations.

Nowadays, Pasar Johar still alive within its functions a smain central traditional market in Semarang where can find most of daily needs such as books, magazine, shoe, textiles, vegetables, fresh meat and others. Today, Pasar Johar still looks busy and always crowded with peoples with their daily traditional trading activities.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Masjid Kampung Layur, an Old Small Mosque with a High Minaret

There is an old small mosque that is situated slightly hidden in the middle of "Kampung Layur", a dense quarter near busy commercial area of Johar Semarang. The quarter itself is originated in 18th Century. The existence of the mosque could be identified from the distance by the appearance of its tower that is raising high in between crowded housing scenery. A high elaborate minaret for muadzin to calls the prayers. By that time, the existence of this round masonry high minaret is not something typical in common mosque in Central Java.

This small old mosque is situated about 700 meters away from The Kauman Mosque at "Pasar Johar" area or about 400 meter from "Hotel Dibya Puri". In the past time, this mosque is situated in the middle of busy ship loading and unloading harbor area. And today the mosque is slightly recessed in the middle of urban quarter, not far away from central commercial area.
This mosque also known as Masjid Kampung Melayu.

The main part of the mosque is a small square building with its "Meru' like roof that hidden inside a high masonry wall fence. Just like typical mosque in Central Java, the roof top is decorated with sculptural crown object that is consisting of breadnut leaves and cudgel shapes, instead of crescent moon and star.
Window details are interesting, particularly on the detail of its perforated louvers with repetition of "Arabic" geometrical star shape patterns. Its combination with green transparent glass on window transom creates a simply beautiful daylight reflection through the interior spaces.

This small mosque seem like a small garden where two different flowers are growing together as a symbol and reflection of take and give process where two different cultures are met together and understand each other in mutual orders.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Hotel Dibya Puri; an Old Hotel at Bodjong Street

Currently, "Hotel Dibya Puri" is an old empty building that is situated in a busy crossroad in Semarang City. The hotel actually was placed in a prominent spot at the crossroad off amous old Bodjong Street and other roads that lead to "Pasar Johar" the old central market and old parade square (alun-alun).

The hotel itself is originally built during Dutch Colonial Era and become one of famous city landmark near Johar Area, a busy business and commercial area in Semarang. The hotel existence could be identified by its simple symmetrical and geometrical shapes. The main entry is situated in the middle part of the building, room bays are placed in two different wings that are ended with the existence of three storey towers (at each sides).

The building is properly set back away from the Main Street and pedestrian lines. and trees around its parking area nicely provide green covers that conceal the building from busy ambience of Johar Area. It should be a nice spot for a city hotel, but nowadays the building remains empty.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

"Toko Oen": Remaining Old Retail Store at Bodjong Street

When somebody takes a walk and passes through the pedestrian in front of "Toko Oen", there is a small signage:"Since 1936" sticks on its glass shop front, This is a self explanation about how old the store was. This was about nine years before the Indonesian's Independence Day.

Currently, the store looks very aged and distracted with the existence of large 'busy' street billboard, street trader's umbrella and slightly concealed behind pedestrian trees. The store's entry is situated at the curved corner-end side that facing to Bodjong Street's T-intersection with a small street. The Roof top signage is directly placed above this entry corner side that slightly facing to the famous 'Old City' Area.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Toko "Naga Mas"; Remaining Old Retail Store at Bodjong Street

The address of the store is self explanatory in an embossed plaster signage text that is still displayed on the existing building facade wall. "Bodjong" was the old name of Pemuda Street before Indonesian Independence Era. Based on this it could be predicted that Toko "Naga Mas" is one of remaining old store at Pemuda Street Semarang.

The building is situated near Toko "Nam Bie" and placed directly at the cross road of Pemuda Street and Gajah Mada-Gendingan Street. The building is a single mass masonry building with a feature box tower. Different with The Pertamina Building (as described in my previous blog article), which is used to place building signage, the feature tower at Toko "Naga Mas" remains as 'blank' box tower.

As also shown and described on the other side of the existing facade signage that facing to north-east side, Toko "Naga Mas" is originally a shoe and bag store. The appearance of the building itself actually is not too big in a matter of size (compare to Toko "Nam Bie"), but visually it looks prominent enough from every point of the cross road area. The existence of an old public mail box in red orange color at the corner-end of the pedestrian, I think elaborates the building's 'vintage' look.