Public Works Ministry to Develop Ulos-Weaving Village in North Sumatra
Date 6 Juli 2020
Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing (PUPR) continues to improving five super-priority National Tourism Strategic Areas (KSPN), namely Lake Toba, Borobudur Temple, Mandalika, Labuan Bajo, and Manado-Likupang
“The sector that can rebound quickly in this new normal era is the tourism sector. Thus, no development activities in the five KSPNs that are stopped,” Minister of Public Works and Public Housing Basuki Hadimuljono said.
Samosir Island in North Sumatra has become the destination of choice among tourists visiting Lake Toba. The island is well-known for its natural beauty and cultural heritage, including the process of manual ulos (handwoven Batak textile) weaving.
The process of ulos weaving can offer a local wisdom experience and become a special attraction for domestic and foreign tourists. In a bid to preserve local artworks and culture in the production of ulos, Ministry of Public House and Public Housing in 2020 has begun auction process for the development of Huta Raja and Huta Siallagan Ulos-Weaving Villages in Samosir Regency using the 2020-2021 DIPA (Budget Implementation Entry List) amounting to Rp 57.9 billion.
Both villages have been known as tourist villages that are often visited by tourists. Aside from being a weaving craft center, there are also Samosir Batak Traditional Houses or Gorga Houses in Huta Raja area.
“Aside from being a weaving craft center, the existence of several old Gorga Houses has made it a heritage area. There are around 40 housing units that will be rehabilitated, so that weaving training can continue and skills in weaving can be improved,” Basuki said.
Basuki added that the condition of Gorga Houses and the surrounding areas will be improved considering that several houses have deteriorated, while other houses have been converted to modern houses.
According to him, if Huta Raja Village is better arranged and have basic infrastructure, such as clean water and sanitation, as well as attractive landscaping, the number of tourists is expected to increase.
In the meantime, Director-General of Cipta Karya of Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing Danis H. Sumadilaga said that the rehabilitation of Gorga Houses as cultural heritage will involve local weavers so that it can also become a workshop for the community to maintain continuity of unique tradition and skills.
“There are a number of houses that have been changed into modern houses. However, we will try to restore these houses and transform them to fully become Gorga Houses. We will also involve the local community, considering that we need special expertise to build the houses. It will become a combination of modern construction work and local wisdom,” Danis said.
Danis also stated that the Gorga Houses can also serve as homestays for tourists to support local economic recovery in the region.
Previously in 2017, Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing has completed the arrangement of Lake Toba, particularly Tomok area in Samosir Regency with a budget of Rp 3.4 billion, which covered the construction of stalls, musalla (muslim prayer room), pedestrian walkway, drainage system, public toilets, and temporary trash disposal sites.
Furthermore, the Ministry has also completed the arrangement of Tomok Tuktuk Siadong tourism area in Samosir Regency in 2018 with a total budget of Rp2.4 billion that was used for the construction of selfie tower and public toilets, stalls, weaving rooms, and rehabilitation of tomb area. (Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing/EN)
Translated by: Syarifah Aisyah
Reviewed by: Mia Medyana