Development Process of Kampong Batik Kauman, Solo City

Kampong is …

  • Traditional settlement which exist in both urban and rural areas
  • Sub standart settlement
  • Sub standart life style
  • Rural type settlement

Local Initiative and development process …

  • Reanimating the effort batik in that area.
  • Reanimating Kauman as a moslem village.
  • Developing Kauman as a tourism village

Non Physical development:

  • Improving people awareness about the potency of their area
  • Promotion to global society through mass media, and participation to seminar/exhibition /discussion.

Physical development:

Making Detail Engineering Design of settlement utility and heritage walk (Marga Lestari) executed in handling of physical phase-1 Kauman


Non Physical:

  • Batik regular monthly bulletin
  • Batik community already has a legal entity
  • Make business loans with savings and loans
  • Natural coloring training guide (environmental friendly colouring)
  • Local national tv coverage for promotional activities


  • Opening of batik museum
  • The opening of new batik show room 8 -7o
  • Make a simple park for open space
  • Street furniture: Green canopy, Council names street, benches, street lights, information board and map 







  1. UNDIP Rural Development Summer School team in Malaysia, 2011
  2. Kauman Community



Sneak Peek at Laweyan History as “Kampung Batik”

Laweyan is one of the most popular kampong in Solo, many batik industries can be found here. Batik industries in Laweyan have been established even before Mataram, one of the famous islamic kingdom in java, moved to Solo from Kartasura. Based on KRT. Mlayadipuro, the history of laweyan was started in 1500’s when Laweyan village was given to Ki Ageng Henis by the king of Pajang Kingdom. Pajang Kingdom was the former kingdom of Mataram. Ki Ageng Henis is an imam which is not only teaching Islamic wisdom but also batik as an art and tradition. In that era, laweyan become the trading center of the kingdom that specializes in threads (“lawe”) for weaving process. Therefore, people started to call it “Laweyan”.

The existence of Kabanaran River has been helped the development of thread industry and trading activities in Laweyan. In Kabanaran Port the  goods distribution actively takes place. Although it rapidly replaced by land transportation such as train. In the 20th century, Laweyan inhabitants are famous as a rich businessman. They even richer than the nobleman in the palace.

In the past, batik business in Laweyan was managed by women, from the batik production process to financial management and marketing. They called them self as Mbok Mase where Mbok means mother, while their husband called as Mas Nganten (Mas: older brother). In the development of batik businesses, women particularly, contribute 75% in the management and production processes while the husband only 25%. Here, their capability in managing businesses have brought women to higher social level. Then these women will trained their daughter. So that later, they could take over the family business, but at that time they were not aware with the strike of modern technology especially textile printing technology. This technology have dominated batik market in 1970’s until late 1990’s. Batik industries in Laweyan then started to rise again when it was formally introduced as Kampong Batik by the former mayor of Solo, Slamet Suryanto in 2000’s.


illustration of batik making (this picture taken in Pesindon Pekalongan)

By: International Class Studio Team Urban and Regional Development Diponegoro University Class 2012

The development of batik industry in Laweyan in the 20th century supported by some factors including batik has a important meaning toward the palace and kingdom as a symbol of power and nobility rank. At that time batik has been transformed into a popular item in the Javanese society especially in Solo City. Batik industry in Laweyan become even bigger when the businessman get the permission to produce stamp batik with traditional motif. The discovery of stamp batik has been affected on the hand writing batik production and market that made by the palace. The use of creative motif has also been suppressed the existence of classic motif. The popularity of batik in Java not only beneficial to the batik maker in Laweyan but also the dutch colonial as the demand of cotton increase. As the market getting bigger not only Javanese businessman attracted to batik industry but also some foreign migrants such as Arabic, china, and European businessman. The detail number of Surakarta batik industries in 1930’s can be found below,

No Owner Total Number
1 Javanese (pribumi) 236
2 China 60
3 Arabic 88
4 European 3
Total 387

Sources: P. De Kat Angelino, 1930, page. 321 in Soedarmono, 2006, page. 49

From those detail above more than 85% of the industries are located in Laweyan and it owned 100% by Javanese people. Those company has different characteristic and specialization. There are five categorizes in batik industry including batik company, babaran company, wedelan company, mbironi company, and prembe or outworker distributor. Batik company is the biggest or the mother for other four companies, the existence of these four companies is to support the production and marketing activities of batik company. There is an unwritten loyal relationship between those supporting company with the main batik company.

Reference and further reading : Mas Mbok Pengusaha Batik Laweyan Solo Awal Abad 20 —-> you can buy it at Roemahkoe Hotel Laweyan Solo (Rp 100.000)^^

Urbanization VS Food Security

Surakarta City is a cultural city located in Central Java Province, Indonesia. Solo City is a city with a mixture of heritage, tourism and commercial activities. These days this city is famous among urban studies practitioners with its green planning and development. Tourism and commercial activities in Solo have attracted not only foreign and domestic investments but also migrants. Migrants have pushed the development toward peri-urban area and, once again, availability of land and houses become the main reason.

Peri-urban area of Solo City consists of some districts, i.e. Sukoharjo District, Sragen District, Karanganyar District, and Boyolali District. Colomadu Sub district is one of Solo peri-urban which is located in the northern part of Solo City. In term of land use characteristic, formerly this area is dominated by agriculture land that produces rice, corn and sugar cane, but currently the number of agriculture land decrease continuously. It occurs due to the development of residential estate and settlement. The number has been decreasing continuously. Today, there is only 519.9 ha farm land left compare while 895.9 ha for residential uses and the number keep increasing. Strategic location, supported by good infrastructure and accessibility, has a crucial effect on the transformation of this sub district. As the main access to the Adisumarmo International Airport, Colomadu appeared as a gold land for many developers and investors. High movement from and toward Adi Sumarmo airport has not only triggered tremendous development of residential and settlement but also commercial activities alongside Adisucipto and Adi Sumarmo Street. It will be even greater when the development of Semarang – Solo and Solo – Kertosono toll road are finish and start to be occupied. In the development planning of the highway, the entrance and exit gate will be located in this sub district specifically in Klodran and Ngasem Village. Colomadu is going to be developed into a big interchange area of Joglo Semar and East Java Province movement. It can be assumed that in the future Colomadu probably is going to be develop as a new core city like Kartasura and Solo Baru though today it more looks like a dormitory city. It is because Colomadu is mostly used as residential area instead of economic activites with residential area rather than other economic activities. However, commercial and services activities have been growing rapidly.

In this essay i would like to discuss about how urbanization has been exploited our farmland in Colomadu. Planning document has been set aside as the need of houses become bigger. As an inhabitant of a particular city we should participated on our preserved our farmland by respect on the development planning and regulation.

Land Conversion Treaten Food Security

Colomadu Sub district is not the only one and the most developed peri-urban area of Solo City. Solo Baru and Kartasura, which are part of Sukoharjo District, are two most urbanized area around Solo City. Both of them are highly developed compared to Colomadu. Solo Baru and Kartasura are dominated by commercial activities but Colomadu development dominated by residential area. Based on the sub district planning document (RDTR 2013), Colomadu is planned to be a residential sub district. On the other hand, the development in Colomadu is still carried on although RDTR planning document stated that 520 Ha farm land in this sub district are categorized as preserved land (LP2B). How is it possible a preserved land planned to be residential development area?

The invasion of residential estate by private developer had been causing not only environmental and land use transformation but also social economic transformation. The number of farmer keeps decreasing day by day. The questionnaire data result shows that there is 80% economic transformation from farm to nonfarm activities with only 3% farmer left from total number of respondents in Colomadu. Farmers tends to shift to urban activities like industrial labor, construction worker, and trader rather than manage their farm land. Farmers, face many difficulties in managing their farm land today as the result of residential and commercial development. One of the farmers in Gawanan Village said that the water is getting difficult to be found because the garbage blocks the drainage. As the nearest urbanize area, Solo City seems to have the biggest role in Colomadu transformation and development. Here is the evidence of land use transformation in Colomadu Sub-district.


Land Use 1990 2003 2006 2011 2013
Wet Land 840.3 716.6 547.6 520 486.6
Built-up 583.3 767.6 865.9 895.9 931.3
Farm 81.9 60.6 67.8 65.4 65.4
Savana 0.32 0 0 0 0
Pond 2.9 2.5 2.7 2.7 2.7
Forestry 0 0 0 0 0
Plantation 4.7 4.6 0 0 0
Others 50.6 82 80.2 86.8 80.2

Sources: BPS OF KARANGANYAR DISTRICT,1990, 2003, 2006, 2011, AND 2013

Compared to the 1990’s, the land characteristics and uses in the 2000’s have been transforming as the result of urbanization and exploitation of settlement. The domination has completely shifted from wet land to built-up area. Today, the land has urban characteristic rather than rural. The plantation use has completely gone just like savanna in 2003’s data. Then, when it is compared to Karanganyar land use data, the statistic shows the real tendency of development compared to other sub-districts. As one of two sub-districts having more built-up use than farm land, Colomadu is quite dense. It was the densest sub-district in Karangayar as proven by population number statistical data in 2012.

Today, the government of Karanganyar District has been managing the development of houses and settlement by giving new law about permitted developers. Only big developers with 40 and more houses project are permitted to build new settlements. Although this law has been set by the government, small developer still can be easily found in Colomadu. This fact makes the development seems to be uncontrollable. Karanganyar local government has been trying to prevent the transformation to be going too fast and decided to create a limitation by setting the minimum unit of houses for private developer. However, recently, based on interview the law has been changed and the government allows small medium developers to build new settlements. Thus, now petty developers can built a new residential estate with only five units of houses. This new construction of planning law will be supported the exploitation of farm land more and more which already reach Colomadu since 1990.

2001 BARU

2014 BARU

Sources: Kusumaningrum, 2014


The time series maps above show the transformation of land use in Colomadu Sub-district. The most obvious one to be identified in those maps are the decrease of farm land and the increasing number of built-up areas. The built-up areas are mostly used as settlement, followed by commercial use and industry. The first series of maps shows the land use transformation from farm to built-up in 2001. In this map, the green color seems to be dominating the land use of Colomadu while followed by the yellow one. In 2013 map some areas have been developed into residential estate areas as represented by orange color.

So how is it influencing the food security?

The faster the development, the agriculture land become lessen. The food production become smaller and smaller. So who’s fault is it? Government? Farmer? People? Urbanization? All of us have to be aware even when we drops one sigle grain of rice one hectar lands being exploited. Each second development has eaten our food. Sustainable planning has to be manage so that our agriculture land could be preserved. We as the future generation have to realized how uncontrolable development could create big issues for our child and grandchild.


What can we do now? As a young urban planner i believe that my city has a big plan and regulation about land and development. But many great plan was set aside by uncontrollable illegal development which is not based on the planning made by the government. So, what we have to do now is just simple, let support our government in maintaining our farm land by their plan. Erase all corruption and let’s all of us follow all the regulation. It is simple but difficult as hell because of population boom and economic development these days. Because population need house, house need lands.

In Ag-Summit i would like to give understanding that it is not as simple as just a small family issues about hunger, but it is a responsibility of a whole city not only the government but also the inhabitant. I hope with this discussion a lot of people will take a bigger attention to the farmland and food.


  • Kusumaningrum, Ratna. 2014. Land Use and Social Transformation in Colomadu Sub-district. Diponegoro University Thesis: Semarang.
  • Statistical Central Bureau of Indonesia. 1990, 2003, 2006, 2011, and 201.3