Building Space for All Ages in East Java, Indonesia

Building Space for All Ages in East Java, Indonesia

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Building Space for All Ages in East Java, Indonesia

Surabaya and Sidoarjo, Indonesia
Project types
: Public park, Pedestrian safety
Collaborators: UN-Habitat, United Cities and Local Governments - Asia Pacific (UCLG- ASPAC), Surabaya City Council, Blockworks Cambridge
Region: Asia and Pacific
Tags: public safety and security, sports and recreation, transportation and infrastructure, children and youth, multigenerational use

Background

Surabaya, a port city on the Indonesian island of Java, is the second most populous city in Indonesia. A vibrant metropolis with a mix of modern architecture and traditional culture, it blends Chinese, Arabic, and Dutch Colonial influences.

Tri Rismaharini, Surabaya’s forward-thinking mayor, has made an ongoing effort since her election in 2010 to allocate 20% of the city’s land to green open space. Her approach has been to turn unused land and spaces into public parks that can be enjoyed by everyone. Despite her efforts, some areas still suffer from neglect and unrecognized potential, especially in poorer areas with dense population.

In 2016, the mayor selected three sites for improvement. The first was an open space in Kedinding, a highly populated area with housing and small businesses. Residents of all ages use the park, which has good access from the main street. Plans were made to improve the space by creating a revitalized recreational area for children and the elderly.

Building Space for All Ages, Block by Block

This workshop was a test project for the Block by Block Methodology to educate the community on the importance of public space and facilitate discussions about water and road infrastructure, safety, and quality-of-life elements such as lighting and places to rest. The community participants used Minecraft to visualize their ideas about the space.

Progress

The winning proposal for the upgraded park included such amenities as a playground, public toilets, and a series of footpaths. Community members worked together to complete the construction.

  Community build, Surabaya Credit: UCLG-ASPAC

Community build, Surabaya
Credit: UCLG-ASPAC

  Community placemaking, Surabaya Credit: UCLG-ASPAC

Community placemaking, Surabaya
Credit: UCLG-ASPAC

  Community celebration, Surabaya Credit: UCLG-ASPAC

Community celebration, Surabaya
Credit: UCLG-ASPAC

  Construction, Surabaya Credit: UCLG-ASPAC

Construction, Surabaya
Credit: UCLG-ASPAC

  Completed project, Surabaya Credit: Block by Block team

Completed project, Surabaya
Credit: Block by Block team

Sidoarjo Sidewalks

Also in Java, about 16 miles (26 km) south of Surabaya, is a city called Sidoarjo. In this city, a hodgepodge of small business had been built up on the sidewalks, forcing pedestrians to spill into the streets. City leaders were struggling with how best to redesign the street and intersection to make it as safe as possible for pedestrians. City officials hosted a Block by Block Workshop to engage the local community and reduce their dependence on foreign experts. The approach was successful, the design for the sidewalk was finished, and construction is now complete.

Well-planned neighbourhoods—Kampung—are so important for Surabaya. They are the foundation, the heart of the city. Without them, Surabaya cannot be a humane city with a clear identity and character.
— Ir. I Gusti Ngurah Antaryama, Architect