I just took a semi vacation-survey trip to Blora-Cepu, Central Java, Indonesia yesterday. It’s part of order for my master college assignment actually. There is one of subject that called urban development studio so that we have to plan the object for a better condition in the future and the study area is the region of Blora, specifically in Cepu (part of Blora).
For you who study in urban and regional planning or development major must know it so well about survey for studio subject. Actually this part is fun because it’s like a vacation but also in formal occasion. In survey trip like this, we can go to other cities or regions, see new things, but the main thing about survey is collecting data in purpose for the analysis part in the studio report. Bah, too much explanation about academic things, huh? Well, I love being part of it.
During my bachelor degree college, I’ve done three studios subjects with three study areas including Pekalongan, Pati, and Semarang, all in Central Java. The survey trips were so simple, literally. Me and my group slept in house of local residents so we paid really cheap for the cost of staying. I went there by motorcycle. We ate in cheap food stall. Basically, it was so simple, cheap, and so as it is. Based on those three experiences, I was a bit surprised with my last studio survey trip to Blora-Cepu. Why? First, I drove a car (my friend’s), second, we stayed in hotel (they said it’s four stars hotel for Cepu), third, we got breakfast and dinner at hotel. So classy. Hahaha. Well, maybe it’s because I’m in master degree right now and lot of the students coming from group of older age and they think it’s appropriate to stay in hotel, and I don’t mind. Hahaha.
Anyway, about Blora-Cepu, hmmm. This region has characteristic as peripheral region. Cepu itself as one of the most developed district in Blora is located right on the border of Central Java and East Java Province. Cepu is famous for its Blok Cepu as oil and gas resource exploration and processing so the district is also known as a company town. Physically, Cepu is not so different with other small towns in Central Java. The town is so small so that you can remember how to go from one place to another side of town just in one day. The road is also pretty narrow and the bad thing is you can find lot of disorganized and messy traditional market activity spilled to the main road in the heart of the town. What else, hmm. Well for a small town class, you can find a lot of hotels here because there is lot of people coming to Cepu for oil and gas business interest. Tourism activity? You’ll find nothing interesting.
For survey context, me and my group focused on housing and settlement aspect of Cepu. The condition is not pretty bad, some of them are high density settlement but in a good condition, some of them are slum especially the settlement nearby Bengawan Solo river that became the border of Blora and Bojonegoro that often causes flood there. The development of settlement is heading to east and south side of the town which is to East Java province, but because it’s already crowded and often affected by flood so the development is changing slowly to the west and north of the town. The worst problem is the road infrastructure. It’s so poor and really really bad. You can do body shake move while driving if you like to dance.
Out of survey context, I did several fun things. I played billiard in hotel even I’m so bad at it haha, me and my group also went to one of the most famous ‘supermarket’ in Cepu, the name is Bravo, haha and I think it’s suitable for a small town like Cepu. We played in game centre there, haha. We also went to buy some local souvenirs in home industry. I bought a woodcraft and eggrolls snack that made of pumpkin. Overall, it was a fun trip.