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Repurposing Pulo Kenanga as Yogyakarta’s New Urban Hub
| Pulo Kenanga, Abandoned Jewel of the City |
Located inside Taman Sari Complex, Yogyakarta, Indonesia, Pulo Kenanga is a cultural heritage site of Yogyakarta. it was used by daughters of the Sultan to leisurely chattering about while creating Batik. Due to its important attendants, Pulo Kenanga was also equipped with defensive outposts. Apparently, Pulo Kenanga importance have diminished over time, out of sight and out of mind, as in our focused survey for this project. Few percentages of local community (30%) have only little to no idea about Pulo Kenanga’s existence, while the majority (85%) possess no understanding of Pulo Kenanga’s historical identity.
| Cultural Heritage Dilemma in Indonesia |
Indonesia is no stranger to losing cultural heritage sites, left abandoned and forgotten, due to urbanization, and lack of proper urban planning. The adaptive-reuse movement in Indonesia, supposedly presenting a solution to revitalizing cultural heritage into its former glory, sadly focused more on commercial principle instead of social impact to the community. The government’s tendency to favor total rebuilding instead of revitalization also generates a dilemma of losing unique urban memories of the original buildings, especially its sense of place.
| Design Approach |
Learning from those previous problems, the proposal to alter the function of Pulo Kenanga into a cultural-workshop hub is an effort to revitalize previously lost cultural heritage while preserving its urban memories. The cultural-workshop unit combined workshop project, museum of preservation, and recreational activities that would protect local cultural values. The workshop would provide tangible and intangible products as one of the educational attraction activities.
The concept of the cultural-workshop unit allows the local community to participate in preserving cultural values and developing tourism attraction, expanding their economic progress, resulting in increased prosperity of the surrounding community. Protection of the original structure will favor the revitalization process using the dry-joint principle, to not damage the few standing structures of Pulo Kenanga as well as preserving the urban memory and urban fabric of the building.
This cultural-workshop unit will grant Pulo Kenanga the chance to relive its original historic position with a modern twist. New revitalized designs were created to contrast the old structures on purpose, so visitors could differentiate between the two, and admire both equally. We aim to preserve the originality and uniqueness of Pulo Kenanga as much as possible, including the position of entrance and exit, to allow Pulo Kenanga’s new function and other buildings inside the Taman Sari complex to remain connected.
| Pulo Kenanga As A New Preservation Approach |
We wish to revitalize an abandoned and forgotten cultural heritage, transforming it through constructive practical breakthroughs to revitalize its broken parts and preserve the remaining old without losing its original cultural memories, allowing for another chance at life and legacy. Pulo Kenanga will not only be mere recreational attraction, but also cultural preservation and education for both local and global communities, a breakthrough for Indonesia's precarious standing with cultural heritage preservation.
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