Soekarno’s dream moved the capital to Palangkaraya

ClickBorneo.Info – As the nation’s capital, Jakarta is now no longer ideal. A myriad of problems are piling up there, ranging from congestion, overcrowding, unplanned development to flooding when the rainy season arrives.

In the 1950s President Soekarno had predicted Jakarta would grow out of control. So since then, Sukarno also sparked his dream of moving the capital of the Republic of Indonesia from Jakarta to Palangkaraya, Central Kalimantan.

At first Semaun brought advice about the movement of the capital, as a great drafter for the order of space in the Soviet Union’s satellite cities in the Central Asia region, Semaun’s ideas were then greeted enthusiastically by Soekarno. For a full year, Soekarno studied Borneo, until finally he drew conclusions,

“The future of the world is food, oil and water sources. Military defense rests on the strength of the Air Force. ”

Soekarno divided national defense in two broad lines: Sea Defense in Eastern Indonesia with Biak being the center of his fleet (this is in line with the geopolitical line of Douglas MacArthur) and Air Defense in Kalimantan. Then Soekarno looked for the right city to become ‘Central Kalimantan’.

Until one night in front of several people, Soekarno intuition to take a white bowl in front of a large map of Kalimantan, he put the bowl into the middle of the map, then Sukarno pointed at the bowl and said,

“That is the Capital of the Republic of Indonesia!”

His finger leads to a point on the banks of the Kahayan river. Next he visited the location and saw a market called Pahandut Market. In this market, Soekarno said

“The Indonesian capital starts here”

This is exactly the same as Daendels’ statement before the Sumedang Assistant District when he built the South Pos road for the French East Indies arsenal, when he pointed to a place that we know today as Bandung.

The arterial road in Palangkaraya was made straight towards a large roundabout, if the war with Britain really happened then the roads would be widened to fourteen lanes for the landing of Mig 21 aircraft that were bought from the Soviet Union. Such was the plan for city planning up to 1975.

Rafinerij or foreign-owned oil mines will be taken over and given to trade unions in the name of the state and the money for education, health and public welfare. The East Kalimantan Military Commander in the mid-1960s Brigadier General Hario Ketjik was one of Sukarno’s admirers who implemented this plan in East Kalimantan. The development of the layout of the city of Palangkaraya is arranged very carefully, until now the layout of the city of Palangkaraya is the neatest in Indonesia.

On the other hand, there are several considerations by Soekarno. First Kalimantan is the largest island in Indonesia and is located in the middle of the Indonesian island cluster. The second removes Javanese centralism.

In addition, development in Jakarta and Java is a concept of Dutch heritage. Soekarno wanted to build a capital city with his own concept. Not a legacy of invaders, but something original.

“Make the City of Palangkaraya the capital and model,” Soekarno said when he first planted the milestone of the city’s development on July 17, 1957.

One more thing, like Jakarta with its Ciliwung river, Palangkaraya also has the Kahayan river. Soekarno wanted to integrate the concepts of river transportation and highways, as in other countries.

Soekarno wanted the Kahayan to be as beautiful as the rivers in Europe. Where residents can relax and enjoy the beauty of the city streamed by the river.

“Do not build buildings along the banks of the Kahayan River. The land along the river bank should be reserved for the park so that the night that was seen was only the beautiful lights when people passed the river, “said Soekarno.

To realize this idea Soekarno collaborated with the Soviet Union. Engineers from Russia were brought in to build highways on peatlands. This development is going well.

But along with the decline of the Indonesian economy in the early 60s, the development of Palangkaraya was hampered. The peak was in 1965, after Sukarno was deposed. Suharto did not want to continue the plan to move the capital to Kalimantan. Java again became the center of development.

Now Jakarta is increasingly out of control, while the development in Palangkaraya is very slow. There is hardly a sign that this city will ever become the magnificent capital of the Republic of Indonesia. Only a monument stood as a reminder that Soekarno had a big dream of moving the capital to Palangkaraya.

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