Already an old article, but it doesn't give much hope for the preservation/renovation of the colonial buildings on Jl. Braga:
Heat put on Braga street development
Source: The Jakarta Post, April 13, 2004
Yuli Tri Suwarni, The Jakarta Post, Bandung
The controversial Braga City Walk project was unlikely to bring the historic Jl. Braga area back to life, a heritage activist and residents said on Monday.
Bandung Heritage Society chairwoman Harastoeti said building a mall, apartment, supermarket and hotel on the street would not be enough to attract people to the area.
The developer and the government should also renovate existing infrastructure and add street lamps and beautiful sidewalks to lure people, she said. A simple upgrade of the sidewalks was not enough.
While the project could attract Bandung residents, it was likely they would only visit the mall, Harastoeti said. People were unlikely to use the sidewalks to buy souvenirs from the shops along the street, as was planned by the government and the developer.
"People will be reluctant to walk on Jl. Braga, as all they need, including shops, cafes and restaurants, they can already get in the mall," she said.
The planned complex is to be set about 50 meters back from Jl. Braga, with developer Bangun Mitra Mandiri promising to provide wide sidewalks for pedestrians on the street as part of the "City Walk" concept.
The firm's executive director, Tjen Ruddy Chandra, has said the complex would occupy 40,000 square meters of land. His company had invested Rp 300 billion (US$35 million) into the project, which could be completed by the end of 2005.
Construction would start immediately after approval from the Bandung administration, Tjen said.
Harastoeti predicted the construction of the buildings would only aggravate traffic jams on the street, as there would be more cars trying to get into the shopping mall complex.
David B. Soediono, the chairman of the Braga Residents Association, said the government, developer and residents should hold a roundtable discussion to determine the street's future.
All parties had to think of how to create a conducive environment to get people onto the sidewalks, generating business for the street's now quiet shops, David said.
Jl. Braga used to be one of the city's main thoroughfares, especially in the Dutch colonial era. Some important shops and company offices were located on the street, including Abundatia florists, which supplied flowers to the governor general's palace in Batavia, now Jakarta.
Over time, the street became more quiet as more owners abandoned their shops, following the shoppers attracted to other parts of the city.
As a result, about a quarter of the 129 historic buildings in the area were destroyed, half were neglected and in disrepair and only the remaining quarter had been renovated by their owners.
Bandung Mayor Dada Rosada stressed his administration had not yet officially approved the project.
"In general we agreed to the project because it is aimed at bringing the street back to life. But before it is officially approved it has to pass environmental impact analysis by the Bandung government," he said.