Malang City like other cities in Indonesia in general only grew and developed after the presence of the Dutch colonial government. At that time the city layout was designed in such a way by the colonial government with the main aim of meeting the needs of Dutch families and other European nations. Meanwhile, the natives had to be satisfied living on the outskirts of the city with inadequate facilities.
In 1879, the city of Malang started operating trains and since then the city of Malang has developed rapidly. Various community needs are increasing, especially for space to carry out various activities. As a result, there was a change in land use, and the built-up areas sprang up uncontrollably. Changes in land use have changed very rapidly, such as from agricultural functions to housing and industry.
The heritage landmarks
The spatial planning of Malang City at that time could not be separated from the works of Herman Thomas Karsten. This architect who was born in Amsterdam in 1884 was appointed as an adviser for planning the city of Malang in 1929. Karsten was actively involved in the city’s development plans, called Bouwplan I-VIII, in which he prepared development anticipation for the next 25 years. One of his works is Ijen Boulevard which until now has become one of the heritage landmarks of Malang City.
In line with the developments mentioned above, urbanization continues and the community’s need for housing increases beyond the government’s capacity, while the level of urbanist economy is very limited, which in turn will result in the emergence of illegal housing which generally develops around trading areas, along the green belt, around rivers, railroads and land that is considered no man’s land. After a while, the area became a settlement, and degradation of the quality of the environment began to occur, with all its innate impacts. These symptoms tend to continue to increase, and it is hard to imagine what would have happened had the problem been ignored.
This nickname is closely related to it with so many tourist destinations, both in the Malang City area and the Greater Malang regional area (Malang Regency and Batu City). Culinary tourism, heritage, thematic villages, city parks, festivals and events, MICE and religion are very diverse in it. Its strategic position in the middle of Malang Raya is also a tourist attraction because it makes it easy to reach natural tourist destinations such as beaches, Mount Bromo and various theme park-made tours in Malang Raya.
This nickname is well deserved by the City of Malang which has more than 50 public and private universities/academies. More than 300 thousand students from various parts of the archipelago to study in Malang City and make it one of the most important educational cities in eastern Indonesia. A number of well-known universities include Brawijaya University, State University of Malang, Muhammadiyah University of Malang, UIN Malik Ibrahim, Islamic University of Malang, National Institute of Technology (ITN) and Merdeka University (Unmer).
City of service industry and creative economy
At the beginning of the establishment of the municipality until the era of the 80s, Malang City had many industries, so it was closely nicknamed the City of Industry. Slowly but surely, along with the development of spatial structures and patterns in regional constellations, the industrial trend is shifting to the trade and service sector. In the last decade, in line with the potential of human resources that continues to emerge, the creative industry ecosystem has become a new sector that is growing rapidly and is predicted to be a driving force for the future of the city’s economy.
The peaceful atmosphere of the city is very suitable for resting, especially for people from outside the city of Malang, both as tourists and to visit family. Many people also choose to spend their old age in Malang for the same reason.
Various historical records including inscriptions are evidence of the long story of Malang City. Starting from its role in the development of major kingdoms, such as Singosari, Kediri, Mojopahit, Demak and Mataram to the colonial era, the era of independence to post-independence. At the beginning of the Republic of Indonesia’s independence, Malang City was listed as being nominated to be made the Capital of the Republic of Indonesia.
So no doubt Malang City also has many historical heritage and cultural heritage both in the form of buildings and non-building. Among the historical buildings that can still be seen today are the Independence Square and Monument, City Hall Building, Hati Kudus Kayutangan Church, Ijen Church, Kota Baru Station, Rajabali Twin Buildings, Kahuripan and Majapahit Bridges, Oen Restaurant, Bank Indonesia Building , and many more.
The Malang City Government continues to make efforts to protect cultural heritage, including by establishing Regional Regulation number 1 of 2018 concerning Malang City Cultural Heritage. A total of 32 buildings have also been designated as cultural heritage which cannot be changed casually for the sake of learning for present and future generations.
City of flower
The nickname Malang City of Flowers is closely related to the many parks and the variety of trees that adorn it. This cannot be separated from the concept of garden city design inherited from Thomas Karsten. One of the most beautiful is Tugu Square Park, which won the title of the best national city park in the early 2010s. In the midst of city development, efforts to maintain the beauty of the park continue to be fought for by the City Government of Malang, including the Revitalization of Malang Square, Trunojoyo Park, Merbabu Park, Firefly Park, Slamet Park, Malabar City Forest, Merjosari Park, and the Mojolangu and Tunggulwulung Nurseries.