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Tibetan Palace to be Renovated

[WTN-L World Tibet Network News. Published by The Canada Tibet Committee. Issue ID: 05/02/18; February 18, 2005.]

(Shanghai Daily is one of the official publications of the Chinese Government)

Beijing Feb.18 -- Architecture experts at Shanghai Tongji University have worked out a blueprint to restore one of the holist sites in Tibet, a project that is expected to break ground in May.

Shanghai government plans to raise 30 million yuan (US$3.6 million) to restore the Sangzhuzi Castle in the city Shigatse, Tibet and build an on-site museum dedicated to the ancient city's culture. The project is expected to take one to two years to complete.

"As a religious site, the historical value of the castle is priceless," Chang Qing, a professor in Tongji's Architecture and Urban Planning College, said yesterday. "Besides restoring the castle, we also have plans to build a multi-function sightseeing complex," Chang said.

According to the blueprint, the construction will have four stories and will be 92 meters tall. The total construction area of the castle will exceed 8,000 square meters. Outside the front gate, an open area will be created for people to hold religious rituals, while the second floor will host an exhibition hall to celebrate Tibetan culture and history as well as an art gallery.

Built in 1363, Sangzhuzi Castle is the oldest structure in Shigatse and was among the temporary dwelling places to all previous Panchen Lamas prior to the current one.

As the original structure of the castle looked like the Potala Palace in Lhasa, the best-known place of interest in Tibet, Sangzhuzi Castle was crowned "Little Potala Palace" even though it is 330 years older that the Buddhist temple in Lhasa.

(Source: Shanghai Daily)


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