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Hui-style buildings protected


Huile Style Building

It seems that the task of protecting these buildings is getting more and more urgent. In response to this, some people are getting creative and finding their own ways of preserving the past.

At the foot of Huangshan Mountain in east China’s Anhui Province sprawl clusters of grey-tiled, white-washed houses: the typical scene from any traditional Chinese landscape painting. This Hui-style architecture is one of the major Chinese architectural styles, dating back to the Song Dynasty.

Huangshan is home to numerous such ancient buildings. In order to preserve them, some people are getting creative. Han Yu is a poet from Shanghai. She came here with her husband years ago and rented this house.

Han Yu said, " It used to be a pigsty. We spent almost 7 years turning it into a bar."

Han Yu now has 3 bars in the village. Each of them has their own style but the original structures remain unchanged. She is not alone. In recent years, several artists have joined her, thanks to a project initiated by the government which allows individuals to join in the effort of preserving historical architecture.

Chen Ansheng, architecture expert, said, "The property rights dictate that the buildings belong to the public but whoever uses them will protect them. It’s a great way to preserve the ancient buildings. They are incorporated into people’s lives and have gained a new life. Protection does not necessary mean lock them up and keep them away from people."

Huangshan is the original location of this ancient Hui-style architecture. The local authorities are hoping more people will join in the cause of preserving these buildings for many generations to come.