History Railways in North Sumatra, One Forerunners Railways on Sumatra Island



INDEPHEDIA.com - The history of railways on the island of Sumatra, apart from West Sumatra, South Sumatra and Lampung, there are also railway lines in the Province of North Sumatra (Sumut). The history birth of the railway in North Sumatra at that time stems from the desire for the tobacco plantation business with inadequate means of transporting plantation products.

The development railway network in Deli was proposed by a plantation company manager NV. Deli Matschappij named J.T. Cremer, who recommended that the railway network in Deli be built immediately considering the growing distribution needs plantation.

Deli is a Malay sultanate that was founded in 1632 by Tuanku Panglima Gocah Pahlawan, which is now known as Medan City and Deli Serdang Regency.

Based on the decision Dutch Governor General in Batavia, dated January 23, 1883, the Dutch government's application for concessions for the construction of a railway network connecting Belawan-Medan-Delitua -Timbang Langkat (Binjai) was realized.

However, in June 1883 the concession permit was transferred from NV Deli Matschappij to NV Deli Spoorweg Matschappij (DSM). In that same year, the construction first railway line in East Sumatra connecting Medan-Labuhan was inaugurated by the commissioner of DSM, Peter Wilhem Janssen and its use began on July 25, 1886 - nowadays the line is also known as Medan Station.

The rapid development of agriculture and plantations at that time, in 1888 the Belawan area was passed by train. Since 1902 the construction railway line was continued to connect Lubuk Pakam to Bangun Purba and this line was used in 1904.

Then, in 1916 a railway network was built that connected Medan to Siantar, which was the center of tea plantations at that time. In 1929–1937 a railway network was also built which connected Kisaran to Rantau Tratap. Until 1940, DSM had built a total of 553,223 km of railway lines.

Initially, the trains at DSM were intended to transport commodities, such as tobacco, rubber and tea. It wasn't until 1886 that DSM began to open a railroad network for passengers at a rate of 3.5 cents per kilometer per person. Generally, the passengers are plantation coolies of Chinese and Javanese descent. Then, the rest were passengers from Europe.

As an illustration, in 1904 the number of HR passengers was 4 million, increasing to 7 million in 1927. During the Japanese population, railways in Sumatra were divided into three parts under the control of the Japanese Army.

The three regions are Kito Sumatera Tetsuda (Aceh and North Sumatra region), second Seibu Sumatora Tetsudo (West Sumatra Region), and Bambu Sumatora Tersudo (South Sumatra region). DSM was merged with state railway company Atceh Stoomtram Staatssporwegen (ASS) to become Kito Sumatora Tetsuda.

After the proclamation of Indonesian independence, railroad employees and fighters took over the railways in Java and Sumatra from Japanese hands. At its peak, on September 28, 1945, Balai Besar Bandung (Head Office of PT KAI) was successfully occupied.

The takeover of DSM itself was carried out on October 3, 1945. Not long ago, the Ministry of Railways Republic of Indonesia (DKARI) Exploitation of North Sumatra was formed. The control railway network in North Sumatra by DKARI only lasted until Military Aggression I in July 1947. This incident forced the railway network in North Sumatra to be re-operated by DSM.

In 1963, DSM belonged to Indonesia de facto and de jare after the nationalization of Dutch damage was carried out. Eks-DSM and all of its employees are combined in the Railway Bureau (DKA), becoming part North Sumatra Exploitation DKA.

Medan Station and Railway Line in North Sumatra

As is known, Medan Station was inaugurated for opening on July 25, 1886 by Deli Spoorweg Maatschappij. At that time there was a line connecting Medan Station and Labuhan Station along 16.7 kilometers.

The line connects the center of Medan City to the Port of Belawan. The rail line continues from Labuhan Station to Belawan Station which was inaugurated on February 16, 1888.

Currently, the architecture of Medan Station has undergone a complete overhaul from its original form. Major renovations were carried out in 2013 with the construction of a new building for the airport railroad and overhauling the existing building design for regional rail services.

What remains old station building complex is the existence of a clock tower at the front station, the existence of a locomotive depot which still has Dutch architecture, the roof part platform that covers lines 2 and 3, and a suspension bridge ("Titi Gantung") at the southern end station. This station also has an elevated line (towards Pulu Brayan and Bandar Khalipah) whose construction began in 2016.

This station originally had nine train lines with line 1 being a straight line from and towards Binjai, while line 2 was a straight line from and towards Pulu Brayan-Belawan.

The tracks at this station run from north to south. The rail that leads to the south is a rail with the direction of travel to Tebing Tinggi, Kisaran, Tanjung Balai, Siantar, and Rantau Prapat.

Meanwhile, the railroad that leads to the north branching about 850 m north station is the direction of travel to Belawan, Binjai, and Besitang. From Medan Station, there used to be a railroad branching to Pancur Batu and Batu, but now it is disabled or no longer used. (STA/IN/*)

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