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Lawang Sewu

Lawang Sewu was designed by Cosman Citroen, from the firm of J.F. Klinkhamer and B.J. Quendag. It was designed in New Indies Style, an academically-accepted term for Dutch Rationalism in the Indies. Similar with Dutch Rationalism, the style is the result of the attempt to develop new solutions to integrate traditional precedents "classicism" with new technological possibilities. It can be described as a transitional style between Traditionalists and the Modernists, and was strongly influenced by the design of Berlage. Construction began in 1904 with A building, which was completed in 1907. The rest of the complex was finished in 1919. It was initially used by the Nederlandsch-Indische Spoorweg Maatschappij, the first railway company in the Dutch East Indies. After the Japanese invaded Indonesia in 1942, the Japanese army took over Lawang Sewu. The basement of B building was turned into a prison, with several executions taking place there. When Semarang was retaken by the Dutch in the battle of Semarang in October 1945, the Dutch forces used the tunnel leading into A building to sneak into the city. A battle ensued, with numerous Indonesian fighters dying. Five employees working there were also killed.
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