Home >> News

Tibetans restore aged-look of Shangrila town

Updated: 2015-07-29 15:45:04

( Xinhua )

Share on

Residents in Shangrila are clinging to the time-worn facade of their ancient home after the fire that destroyed 300 houses in 2014. [Photo/Yunnan.cn]

Immersed in a cloud of sawdust, carpenter Dainzhen Lhamo vigorously gouges scratches into a newly carved door using a steel brush, vandalizing the entrance to a half-finished wooden house in Dukezong town.

As the 1,300-year-old town builds from the ashes of a fire that destroyed 300 houses in January 2014, its residents are clinging to the time-worn facade of their ancient home.

Before Dainzhen is finished with the door, he will carve worm holes and give it a new coat of paint.

"I want to restore a sense of history and build the house so it looks like it was before the fire," Dawa Cering, who hired Dainzhen to work on his house, said.

Once a hub along the old Tea-Horse Road, Dukezong is a Tibetan village located in Shangrila County, southwest China's Yunnan Province. It was built according to "Shambhala (heavenly realm)" in Sutra and named the "Town of Moonlight" in Tibetan. The town, with well-preserved Tibetan residential houses and plenty of bars, inns and specialty stores, was a hot tourism spot before the fire.

Yang Jizu, an official with the reconstruction headquarters, said owners are required to repair their own houses using government subsidies and guidance. Currently, more than 3,000 builders work each day to renovate the town, despite the summer rain.

Deputy Party chief of Shangrila Kang Jianhua said the local government advised the reconstruction work preserve the original flavor of the town.

Cering's house has been chosen as a demonstration project by the government. The 280-square-meter house was formerly used as a specialty store.

"There were seven years left on the lease after the fire," he said. "I extended the lease to 12 years and have already invested around 500,000 yuan (80,550 U.S. dollars) in rebuilding the house."

"Construction has strictly followed ancient construction techniques. The walls are piled up with soil and the pillars, roof girder and floor are all made of wood," he said.

1 2 Next
Editor's Pick
Hot words
Most Popular