Monday, December 31, 2012

When the Trains Run on Seaside Railway to Semarang City

This is a snapshot of a very common seaside view when train passengers experiencing a travel by train to Semarang City. About hour before entering Semarang City from Jakarta City (and vice versa), they will experiencing a stunning seaside landscape. There are some spots where the railways are situated very closed against the beach and allowing every train passengers could see how strong the sea waves hit black stones along the beach. This a way to experiencing panoramic Java Sea views from a train that run on seaside railway.

The train just pass trough on the railway which is situated between beach on one side and forest on other side. Train passengers could also viewing local fishermen compounds along the beach including their daily activities on fish auction market and traditional fish port where the fishermen park their boats. In many occasions train passengers can experiencing some fishermen boats are floating around in a proximity. Of course, this seaside railway experiences could only be enjoyed when the train pass this spot before and after the night time.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Awaiting Lost Tower to be Rebuilt for "de Cultuur Maatschappij der Vorstenlanden MV" Building

First time I took picture of this building was two years ago, where the south-end side tower belong to this building is already lost. It was documented in my blog post dated 18 January 2011. One year after that, I saw the main roof in the middle part of the building is partially collapsed. It was great when I took visit to this building on he year of 2012, this old building was initially revitalized. Many bamboo scaffolding are installed around the building.

The building of PTP-XV - originally known as Cultuur Maatschappij der Vorstenlanden MV. - is one of old Dutch Colonial building at Semarang old city conservation area.  When we stand over the mBerok River bridge, we can always see this building in very prominent appearance. 

Some of old buildings in Semarang City are already gone, and it is great to see some of them are recovered from severed damages. And now we are waiting, will the old lost collapsed tower will be recovered again? Only time will tell......

Old Red Brick Architecture at Gedangan Street

Today, the old Gedangan Street is known as Ronggowarsito Street. The North-end section of this street is mostly surrounding by swamp. Meanwhile the 300 meter long of the South-end side of this street is look specific in its appearance by the existence of prominent old red brick buildings at both sides of the street. When we take a walk pass through this street, it feel like we walk at city in Northern Europe within its famous old buildings with red brick Gothic Architecture or red brick Romanesque Architecture style.

 Old Gedangan Church or currently known as St Joseph Church is situated at eastern side of the street. Meanwhile, Kanisius Foundation Complex is situated at the opposite western side. Both two buildings appear in similar style of red brick architecture. Based on history notes, Gedangan Church is initially built in the year of 1870 by Dutch Catholic Priest. It look well preserved for more than 140 years and become a city landmark in Semarang City, particularly in North part of the city.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Masjid Pekojan, an Old Masjid near a Chinese Quarter

Masjid Pekojan is one of some old Masjid in Semarang City that is hidden in the middle of a quarter. The Masjid is situated near a T-intersection street against the Pekojan main road that commonly known as part of Chinese quarter in Semarang City. From this main road the Masjid could be easily recognized by the existence of its light-green color tower.

Based on history notes, the Masjid is firstly built in the year of 1309 by some Muslim from Pakistan. Major renovation works are already made. Maybe only small part in the Masjid are originated from the past times such as wooden doors (currently painted in turquoise color), decorative transoms over doors and of course the lectern inside the mihrab that is made from teak wood. A number of old graves are also found underneath lush trees in the front courtyard near the main entry gate.

Snapshot to Remaining Chinese Old Houses at Pekojan and Kranggan

Semarang City is known for its large ethnically Chinese population, and Pekojan and Kranggan are district in Semarang City Chinese population is centralized since Dutch Colonial Era. Nowadays, as always found in typical 'China Town' we can find of common housing that is blended together within commercial and trading places.

In Pekojan and Kranggan area we can find remaining old houses with its unique gabled clay roof. Most of them are two-storey shop-houses where lower level is commonly used as trading space and upper level is commonly used as dwelling unit. Some of old houses remain untreated and may others are already converted to new shop-houses with new look.

Most of photographic pictures in this posting are taken around the north entry gate of Pekojan Street near Jurnatan Street and Pasar Johar market. Just a small part of Pekojan and Kranggan area, one of large Chinese quarter in Semarang City where we can find Chinese population preserve their culture and tradition.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Sanpshot to Old Houses at Tanjung Street Semarang

Tanjung Street is just an about 440 meter long street, a short street that connects the middle part of the famous "Old Bodjong Street" or currently known as Pemuda Street to Imam Bonjol Street (also known as Pendrikan Street in the past time). Tanjung Street itself during Dutch Colonial Era is known as Genielaan. This name of street is related with a Dutch military dormitory complex for combat engineering corps or commonly known as 'zeni' corps.

Nowadays, not far from Pemuda Street intersection we can find a row of remaining old houses, well-preserved old houses with unique facade appearances. These houses are easily identified within the appearance of its rich detailing on wooden roof fascia. These decorative fascia are floating in a distance against facade wall behind and then creating nice shadow on the white walls.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Masjid Sekayu, a Small Masjid in the Middle of Kampong in Semarang City

History notes mention that in the year of 1413 a small simple Masjid have already established on the site where Masjid At-Taqwa currently situated at Kampung Sekayu Semarang. The Masjid is founded by Kyai Kamal during his duty to collect good quality teak wood materials for development of Masjid Demak. Kyai Kamal himself was officially appointed by Sunan Gunung Jati of Cirebon to assist Raden Patah as King of Demak for the development of Masjid Demak.

The name of Kampung Sekayu itself is related with the site during Dutch Colonial Era was known as a place where teak wood raw materials from other towns near Semarang are temporary collected for further trading purposes.

Decorative crowns on main roof top and tower roof top are some of original parts from old Masjid could be retained. Other prominent parts that are retained from the original Masjid are the existence of 4 (four) teak wood pillars in the middle of the Masjid that are currently covered with other new layers of teak wood clad. The Masjid is now vertically expanded and a mezzanine floor is inserted behind double space hall where 4 wooden pillars are situated.

Nowadays, maybe not too easy to find this Masjid in the middle of dense urban  settlement under the shadow of new Mall Building in the center of Semarang City. The existence of its tower with unique decorative crown from the past time maybe can help somebody who trying to find the Masjid.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

An Old House on the Hill with Sea View Far Away

The house is situated on steep hill at Tanah Poetih hill street. Nowadays the street known as Wahidin Sudirohusodo Street, a transition street that connecting Semarang coastal plain area to Semarang hill city area. The house and its large courtyard is elevated on steep green hill. Somebody must take a long walk through a steep and long steps way before entering the verandah.

I remember during my childhood I ever stopped by on the pedestrian in front of this house. And I found stunning sea view within glimpse of big vessels floating on the sea. Imagine if I sit on a chair inside the verandah, may be I will nicely enjoy this stunning sea view better than I have found when I was standing on street pedestrian. When we open the Google Map and stretching a straight line from this house position to the beach line, we will find a certain distance about more than 10 kilometers.

Yes, it just a memory that comes from my childhood during 1970s. A memory from the past time when my grandfather took me on his grey colors Das Kleine Wunder (DKW) from the year of 1940s, an old mighty German made motor bike that could climbed steep hill street of Tanah Poetih. We stopped by at street pedestrian in front of this old house and pointing our fingers out to panoramic Semarang coastal plain area with blue-green Java Sea as a background. 

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Jomblang Hill View

Pictures in this posting are taken around Jomblang-Candisari area where Jomblang Reservoir and Cantung Cemetery Hill are situated. Jomblang itself is an interesting area that comprises including a highland elevated area where dense settlement around steep Jomblang Hill side is located below the reservoir building and cemetery site. In this area we can find and experiencing a transition point between Semarang higher ground area and Semarang lower coastal plain area.

From the lower ground at the end of Mataram street we can see glimpse of lush frangipani trees that grow on Cantung cemetry hill with glimpse of of small copula tower belong to the reservoir building is found nearby. From the higher ground at 'slum' walkway around the 'kampung' settlement we can have wider view throughout most part of Semarang lower plain city area, including the emerging new apartment tower that will become the tallest building in Semarang City.

Around south-end side of Mataram Street, we can still find a remaining abandoned old big house facing to the commercial area across the street. An old house with large front courtyard that currently hidden behind messy temporary fenching and street vendor sheds. It seem a house came from the past time that typically is found and spread-out in some places in this city.

In my older blog posting I have mentioned about the goat market (pasar kambing) and Jomblang Reservoir; actually these two sites are situated not far from south-end side of Mataram Street and maybe becomes another 'hallmark' belong to the Jomblang Hill Area.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Remaining Old House at Sompok Lama Street (Part-3)

There is an old house in the street intersection of Sompok Lama Street and Manggis #1 Street near an open park with a hippopotamus statue. Seemingly, this is another well preserved remaining old house at Sompok Lama Street.The house is nicely hidden and set back behind lush trees and greenery belong to its front courtyard.

A cozy verandah is found in the east-end side of the house to make the entry door is recessed against the direction of the street. A suspended roof canopy is located at verandah entry opening. This roof canopy is simply suspended by the using of steel rods and turnbuckles. Typically, this kind of suspended canopy detail could be found in some another old houses, particularly in Semarang City.

It seems the living room area is elaborated as a protruding faceted part belong to the house facade. Tall rectangle wooden louvered windows in combination with window transom above and stone cladding below are becoming the major exterior part of the protruding living room.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Remaining Old House at Sompok Lama Street (part-2)

There is another colonial old house at Sompok Lama Street. It look well preserved in its original appearance including its rich details on building facade. The house is situated at Sompok Lama Street No.8, the location is about 60 meter from the other remaining old house previously described in this blog or about 100 meter from 'T-junction' of Mataram Street. The house is facing to the south.

Just like typical tropical house, a veranda is found as the front part of the house. This veranda is a covered open lounge space that is protruding from the main part of the building. Actually, this veranda is becoming an interesting part of the house. Rich detailing is found on its roof fascia where Gothic floral patterns at roof fascia with triangular shape that is combined with local Javanese patterns on wooden lower fascia under clay roof cover.

 Corinthian columns are also found and become another prominent elements from the house facade. These columns are found in rectangular shape and also in smaller round shapes around the protruding veranda.

Nowadays, the house is utilized as a kind of small public health service building. The house is easily recognized when somebody passing the street, it found as a white painted house with rich architectural detailing on roof facade and nice green landscaping on the courtyard. This is one of remaining old house from Colonial Era. A well preserved old house from Semarang old city master plan. I think some old houses with similar details also found in Kampung Kauman and Kampung Barusari as I have described in my older blog post.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Remaining Old House at Sompok Lama Street (part-1)

Sompok Lama Street is about 400 hundred long street within a 'T-junction' against M.T. Haryono Street. This is one of remaining old street in Semarang have originally planned by Thomas Karsten and became part of Dutch Colonial old city master plan. 

There are some colonial old houses are still found here. One of the house is situated at Sompok Lama Street No.21. Nowadays, this house is found as a house that painted in blue colors. The house building is nicely setback at about 15 meters from the street, it creates a nice and spacious courtyard in front of the house. A strong symmetrical composition is directly recognized where a kind of long covered verandah is placed in-between two block of rooms within attics at the right and left-end side of the house.

Based on Semarang Government official website, the architectural design style of the house is described as European Romanticism Style with strong influence of renaissance style. This is could be recognized by the existence of the attic window within arch shape and also the elaboration of external wall corners with stone cladings.

The existence of wooden roof fascia within its rich ornamental details are described as obvious influence of the local Javanese design. Combination of clay roof, wooden louvered windows and doors are actually makes this house appears in colonial-tropical style.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Jomblang Reservoir, and a Silhouette of a Dome on a Hill

Jomblang Reservoir is another remaining old clean water reservoir in Semarang that built during Dutch Colonial Era. Jomblang reservoir looks slightly bigger than The Siranda Reservoir. As similar as Siranda Reservoir, the building consist of two big domes.The appearance of the reservoir building is always visible as a silhouette of big dome with a copula tower on Tanah Putih Hill.

The reservoir building is situated about 300 meter from 'Pasar Kambing Mrican' the goats market. The Jomblang Reservoir is part of Tanah Putih uphill road scenery. Always concealed under the lush big trees around Tanah Putih Hill.

Actually, the building appearance of Jomblang Reservoir is similar as the first older reservoir building belong to Siranda Reservoir. It also found at the Jomblang Reservoir same grass covered big domes, same small copula tower on the of the dome and also same entry facade. Anyway, the existence of these two old clean water reservoir buildings becomes one of the evidence that originally Semarang City is already well planned since almost hundred years ago.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Pasar Kambing Mrican, a Traditional Goats Market at the Traffic Lights

The place is situated less than one kilo meter from Peterongan market place, directly situated at the traffic light at the intersection of 'Mrican' Street and south end side of Mataram Street. Yes, this is a goats market, a place where we can found street traders who sell life goats. There is a goat statue that could be found as a sign of  market existence.

There is a row of bamboo shed at one of street pedestrian side where the traders displaying the goats. At the peak selling time the goats just loosely displayed along the both street pedestrian sides around the traffic lights area. Traditionally, the peak selling time is around the Eid al-Adha', an Islamic annual holiday. The need of life goats is also related with another traditional Moslem's need to sacrifice of an animal, particularly goat on the occasion of a child's birth.

When Semarang Citizens mention about goat market, it will always refers to this place as an almost semi permanent market place that sells life goats. Actually, this is one of another unique traditional market places that are still found in Semarang City.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Pasar Peterongan, a Traditional Market and Legend of an Old Tamarind Tree

Nowadays, Pasar Peterongan is known as one of remaining traditional market in Semarang City. The existence of this traditional market is already found in old city master plan have prepared by the Dutch during Colonial Era. The market place is prepared and planned as one of important daily trading place in eastern side of Semarang City. Based from old vintage photo, there was originally a train railway existed at the foreground of the above picture.

The existence of many old market places in Semarang City are associated with the name of trees, such as Pasar Johar is related with the name of johar tree (senna siamea), Pasar Randusari is related with the name of randu or kapok tree (ceiba pentandra) and Pasar Jatingaleh might be related with the name of teak tree (tectona grandis). And the existence of Pasar Peterongan might be associated with the existence of an old tamarind tree, but in this case, the name of the the tree was not becoming the name of the market place. 

Currently, the old tamarind tree is directly situated behind the market office building. When somebody pass the main street, it looks like a green background over the market office building and shadowing messy traditional trader shelters behind. Local folktale told that this tamarind tree is much older than the current market building is.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Siranda Resevoir; a Remaining Piece of Semarang War History

Siranda Reservoir is an old clean water reservoir built during Dutch Colonial Era. A lettering on the wall mentions a text of '1912', this may indicates that the building is already there since more than hundred years ago. 

Siranda itself is relates with an uphill road, a transition road that connecting Semarang's down town to upper town area. The reservoir building is actually a dome-roofed building that covers with green grass layers over. A small copula tower with ventilation louvers is situated on the peak and around the roof domes. There are two reservoir domes in Siranda Reservoir complex. The new on is built around the year of 1923.

The older dome is the bigger one with its interesting main entry facade. A strong symmetrical arrangement that consists of a double louvered timber door in the center of the facade within timber louvered windows at both sides. A plaster arch shapes are strongly dressing the entry facade of the reservoir building.

The Siranda Reservoir is noted as one of the important part in related with Semarang history in related with five days war against Japanese invasion in the year of 1945. There was an incident that involving a young medical doctor who killed by Japanese trooper when he tried to do a verification regarding poisoned reservoir water. Dr. Kariadi, the name of the heroic doctor finally is memorialized as a name of the main public city hospital in Semarang City.