Sultan Abdul Samad Building

Stop by Sultan Abdul Samad Building if you are visiting Malaysia Textile MuseumKuala Lumpur City Gallery or Merdeka Square. It is located in front of Merdeka Square and Royal Selangor Club.

Designed by A.C. Norman, the construction started in 1894 and was completed in 1897. Its architecture was built using Moorish architecture which makes it stand up among all the other buildings in the vicinity. This building is named after Sultan of Selangor who reigned from 1857 to 1898.

Sultan Abdul Samad BuildingThe busy street in front of the historical building.

The building has a shiny cooper dome and a 41.2 metres high clock tower. It was constructed of red bricks and has a 2 metre wide verandah around both floors. The red bricks are exposed and have white plaster lined arches and striped which have became known as blood and bandages style.

Several forms of arches such as ogee arch, horse shoe arch, pointed arch and multi foil arch were used to build the structure. It has 3 towers namely the tallest Central Clock Tower and 2 shorter circulation towers. All the towers have onion shaped domes with copper coverings.

This building had been the focal point of many historical events. The declaration of the independence of Malaysia was done in front of this building on August 31, 1957 where the Union Jack Flag was lowered and replaced with the national flag of Malaysia.

Keeping The Sultan Abdul Samad Building's Clock Moving

The historical clock on the tower was made by Gillet and Johnston Manufacturers in Croydon, England. This giant clock has been around for over a century and consists of a pulley system, weights and gears to function. It has to be manually maintained to keep it moving everyday.

The task of doing it is not easy but thankfully a team of staff from the Survey and Mapping Department or JUPEM has volunteered to do the daily winding, cleaning and oil the mechanism of the clock. It takes about 3 hours a day for a team of two to do the job.

Sultan Abdul Samad Clock TowerThe clock tower.

At one time, the time zone in West Malaysia was half an hour later than East Malaysia. The standardization of time between Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore was done here on January 1, 1982.

Sultan Abdul Samad Building was used to house the Federated of Malay States administration after its completion in 1897. Since 1972, this building has been used to house the High Court and the Supreme Court. When the new Federal Administrative Capital of Malaysia was completed, the Federal Court and Court of Appeals have since moved to the Palace of Justice in Putrajaya. It now houses the commercial Division of the High Court of Malaya as well as a handicraft centre.

Every year, Malaysian will congregate here to usher in the New Year.

Bangunan Sultan Abdul SamadAnother view of the building.

Getting Here

Take the LRT and alight at Masjid Jamek station. This building is 10 minutes walk from the station. You will not miss it because there are many good signage to guide you to this place. You can follow the Dataran Merdeka or Royal Selangor Club directions if you are not sure. They are located in the vicinity of each other.

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