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15:44 May 05 2010

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Environment, local culture key to Yushu reconstruction
15:41, May 05, 2010  

BEIJING, May 5 -- Environmental protection and the maintenance of local traditions should be given priority in the reconstruction of earthquake-ravaged Yushu, said experts who had experience in rebuilding areas hit by the Wenchuan quake on May 12, 2008.

"Any good solution for Yushu's reconstruction should include due consideration of the natural and cultural characteristics there," said Li Dihua, assistant professor of the graduate school of landscape architecture at Peking University.

Pilot reconstruction started on Tuesday in the villages of Trangu and Ganda near the epicenter of Gyegu Town prior to the release of a comprehensive reconstruction plan, according to the rescue and relief headquarters.

Luo Huining, governor of Qinghai province, said earlier that the government will rebuild the county into an eco-friendly attraction and business destination within five years.

"The rebuilding process should be local and adaptive. In fact, local people know best," said Li, adding that it is very important to draw from the experiences of the local Tibetan people who have inhabited the area for thousands of years.

Li's idea was echoed by Tao Tao, chief planner of WWW5A Werkhart International, a leading architecture design company.

"The reconstruction should take local residents' lifestyle and culture into account. And the style of the structures must be in line with Tibetan characteristics so that they can match the local culture and traditions," said Tao.

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