keywords: old welfare building, land and survey building, sabah, graffiti, history
If you noticed, just across the road where Suria Sabah is situated and just next to HSBC building; a building ruins dating back from the British North Borneo administrative era.
This building was once a Land and Survey building then converted to be used by the Department of Social Welfare and also the office for the Society for the Blind.
This building is one of the oldest on Kota Kinabalu, a remnant from the British North Borneo administrative era. A proposal submitted by the Sabah Art Gallery, to reuse the building as the art gallery premise in November 1992 was never made possible; the building was mysteriously destroyed in a fire on the morning of 31st December 1992, leaving behind concrete portions of the building that we see today. Its pretty sad thing, because this building has the potential to boost tourism and become one of the main attraction in Kota Kinabalu. Do you smell an old foul play here?
The building is just abandoned like that, without any effort from the authority for almost 20 years after the fire incident; can you believe that?!
Anyway, the concrete walls and the columns now has been redecorated with paintings from Sabahan art enthusiasts. The historical site is a canvas in which they used as to express their arts creativity, showing people around the importance of preserving a historical site, which in this case the authority failed to do so for many years.
This blog post was inspired by my fascination of the old building graffiti. The blog pictures are courtesy of Richard Nelson Sokial, author of sabahwarriors blog in which I took permission to post it on my blog. So a big thanks for him for all the detailed information about this building.
For more information about Kota Kinabalu/Jesselton in the early colonial, pre and post World War II era, you can visit sabahwarriors blog, that has been explained in these blog post:
Jesselton township history
The old welfare building detailed history
Up next in my post are pictorial of the graffiti I took two weeks ago.
Professor Johnston often said that if you didn’t know history, you didn’t know anything. You were a leaf that didn’t know it was part of a tree. ~ Michael Crichton, Timeline