Landmark Buildings of 34 Provincial Capitals in China (Ⅰ)

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Beijing: Tian’anmen
Tian’anmen (the Gate of Heavenly Peace), is located in the center of Beijing. It was first built in 1417 and named Chengtianmen (the Gate of Heavenly Succession). At the end of the Ming Dynasty, it was seriously damaged by war. When it was rebuilt under the Qing in 1651, it was renamed Tian’anmen, and served as the main entrance to the Imperial City, the administrative and residential quarters for court officials and retainers.
 
On October 1, 1949, Chairman Mao Zedong proclaimed on Tian’anmen Rostrum the founding of the People’s Republic of China. Since then Tian’anmen has been the symbol of New China. Chairman Mao’s portrait is hung above the central entrance, flanked by two slogans:” Long Live the Great Unity of the Peoples of the World”. Today, the splendor of Tian’anmen attracts million of visitors from all over the world.
 
Tianjin: Radio and Television Tower
Tianjin Radio and Television Tower is as high as 415.2m, the second highest in Asian and the fourth highest in the world. It cover an area of 300 mu, 70% is water area. Its body is in the shape of parabolic curve, while the tower is in the shape of paying disk, thus the entire building is simple, smooth and straight. It has a viewing hall and a rotating restaurant, allowing people to have a bird’s-eye view of Tianjin.
 
It was built in 1991. Approximately two-thirds up the tower is an observation pod with floor space 253m (used mostly for communication equipment). It is a member of the World Federation of Great Towers.
 
Shanxi-Taiyuan: Postal Tower
Taiyuan Postal Tower was built in accordance with the five-star standard. It is one of ten highest buildings and also one of landmark buildings in Taiyuan City. It is 145 meters high, covering 1,436 km, consisting of 36 main floors, 16 additional floors and 5 floors of annex, which is a comprehensive building combined with business and restaurants. For Taiyuan people, it is the same important as Oriental Pearl TV Tower of Shanghai, adding modernization into the ancient city.
 
Inner Mongolia: Five-Pagoda Temple
Five-Pagoda Temple (Wuta Si), which is also called Jingangzuo Sheli Baota, is located in Hohhot City. As there are five small dagobas on the pedestal of the pagoda, it is named Wuta Si. Wuta was originally a building of the temple constructed during 1727-1732. Now the temple has disappeared, but the pagoda has remained.
 
Compared with other pagodas, Five-Pagoda Temple is unique in at least two aspects: its special structure, pagodas over pagoda, and the green and yellow colored glazes on the short eaves and tops of pagodas. Those make Five-Pagoda Temple quite special, a treasure of Hohhot City.
 
Liaoning- Shenyang: Imperial Palace
The Shenyang Imperial Palace, located at No. 171, Shenyang Road, Shenhe District in Shenyang City, is the only existing royal palace in China outside of the Forbidden City in Beijing. The main structure of the palace was built in 1625 when Nurhachi was in power. It was finished in 1636 by his son Abahai (Huangtaiji). Nurhachi and Abahai were both founding emperors of the Qing Dynasty. The Shenyang Imperial Palace houses many ancient cultural relics, such as Nurhachi's sword and Abahai's broadsword. There are also many artworks displayed here, such as paintings, calligraphy, pottery, sculptures and lacquer ware.
 
It was listed by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage Site in 2004 as an extension of the Forbidden City and is now the most popular and renowned tourist attraction in Shenyang.
 
Jilin-Changchun: South Lake Park
South Lake Park (Nanhu in Chinese), constructed firstly in 1933, is located in the southwest part of Changchun Urban District. With a total area of more than 2.22 million m2, including lake area of 920 000 m2, the South Lake Park is the largest park in Jilin Province and the second largest in China, second only to the famous Summer Palace in Beijing.
 
Heilongjiang-Harbin: St. Sophia Church
St. Sophia Church in Harbin is the largest Eastern Orthodox Church in the Far East. It is 53.3 meters high and occupies an area of 721 square meters. In November, 1996, it was listed as one of the Key Cultural Relics under State Protection. Half a year later, the Harbin City government repaired it and renamed it as Harbin Art Gallery. It is a respectable landmark for Harbiners and for tourism.
 
Shanghai: The Oriental Pearl TV Tower
The Oriental Pearl TV Tower is located in Pudong Park in Lujiazui, Shanghai. The tower, surrounded by the Yangpu Bridge in the northeast and the Nanpu Bridge in the southwest, creates a picture of 'twin dragons playing with pearls'. This 468 meters high tower is the world's third tallest TV and radio tower. The entire scene is a photographic jewel that excites the imagination and attracts thousands of visitors year-round.
 
Zhejiang-Hangzhou: Leifeng Tower
Leifeng Pagoda is a five story tall tower with eight sides, located on Sunset Hill south of the West Lake in Hangzhou. Originally constructed in the year AD 975, it collapsed in 1924 but was rebuilt in 2002, since when it has been a popular tourist attraction. Leifeng Pagoda was one of the ten sights of the West Lake because of the Legend of the White Snake.
 
As for whether there was a mausoleum below, this was debated for years until finally radar was used to investigate. On March 11, 2001 the mausoleum was excavated and many treasures were found, most notably a gold and silver coated hair of the Buddha.
 
Hebei-Shijiazhuang: Arts Center
Built on October 1999, Hebei-Shijiazhuang Arts Center covers 44.62 mu with 32,000 square kilometers’ building area. It was one of important projects of Henan during the ninth five-year plan period. The design of whole center appears very elegant, solemn and beautiful. Nowadays, it is a first-class concert hall in the country, functioned as music hall, recreational hall and meeting hall.
 
Jiangsu-Nanjing: Xuanwu Gate
Xuanwu Gate is an ancient gate of ancient Nanjing. Now it is one of gates of Xuanwu Lake Park. The largest ancient city in China is Nanjing City, which was built in Song Dynasty, lasting for 21 years. The city wall, with average height of 12 meters, is made of huge stone bricks which weighs 10 to 20 kilograms per one. The names of brick-makers can often be seen on some bricks. The city wall is so endurable that there are still two third part reserved well now.
 
Anhui-Hefei: Holiday Inn and Shouchunlu Bridge
Hefei Holiday Inn and Shouchunlu Bridge are located in the commercial center of the city. The holiday Inn is the only one five-star hotel in Hefei. Under the management of famous Intercontinental Hotel, it is equipped with 338 deluxe rooms, 4 restaurants, 4 meeting halls and other recreational facilities.
 
Located on the eastern part of the city, Shouchunlu Bridge crosses Nanfei River and it is the first reinforced concrete arch bridge in Hefei. In 187, in order to relieve the transport pressure, the government built this bridge. And on January 1, 1988, it was officially put into use, becoming the main bridge in the direction from east to west.
 

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