Drum Tower Plan Shelved

A controversial plan to destroy one of Beijing’s most historic neighborhoods around the Bell and Drum Towers in order to develop a commercial tourist attraction have been put on hold, according to Global Times:

Extensive plans to “restore” Gulou into something dubbed “Time Cultural City” by the former Dongcheng district director Yang Yiwen have all been shelved, according to a government insider who requested anonymity.

“The Time Cultural City is a thing of the past,” an anonymous deputy director of the new Dongcheng district was quoted as saying in a Beijing Times report Monday.

While the authorities maintain Gulou’s future is unclear, culture heritage preservation experts were celebrating Monday what they characterized as new hope for one of the city’s last remaining pieces of authentic hutong culture.

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