For­bid­den City walls get­ting ma­jor re­pairs

China Daily (Canada) - - NEWS CAPSULE -

The Palace Mu­seum, also known as the For­bid­den City, has be­gun a restora­tion project to keep the walls from col­laps­ing.

Ex­perts re­cently fin­ished a sur­vey on the con­di­tion of the 3,437 me­ters of wall. It shows hid­den haz­ards: some sec­tions have been hol­lowed out over time, and are sag­ging. Grass and tree roots that have in­fil­trated gaps pose an­other ma­jor threat to their sta­bil­ity.

The western walls have sus­tained the most dam­age. A 233-me­ter section on that side has been cho­sen as the first tar­get for ren­o­va­tion. Plans for the rest are pend­ing.

The orig­i­nal work on the For­bid­den City dates to 1420. They have an earthen core, pro­tected by outer bricks.

Zhao Peng, a mu­seum en­gi­neer who is lead­ing the restora­tion project, said his team will stick to tra­di­tional Chi­nese con­struc­tion meth­ods, but he also ac­knowl­edged ex­pected dif­fi­cul­ties.

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