Xi’an(1995-2005)/Tourist’s perspective: travelling in between historical sites
The main focus of urban renewal of Xi’an since the second masterplan released in 1980 has been shifted to tourism. Among the second(1980-2000), the third(1995-2010) and the fourth(2004-2020)masterplan, a series of strategies of historical sites preservation dominated the shaping of the city.
The government decided to preserve all relic buildings, wall and gates of the great historical sites including Tang Chang’an area(Tang Dynasty), Han Chang’an(Han Dynasty), Xianyang(Qin Dynasty) and Fenghao(Zhou Dynasty)in order to promote its reputation as the world’s famous ancient capital city. Avoiding damages of the historical site, new towns for local residents were only built next to the great historical sites.
Because of the locations of the great historical sites where some were surrounded by built-up areas, such as Ming city wall, Tang city wall, and mostly located in the outlying regions of the city, for example, the site of mausoleum of the first Qin emperor, Lao-niu po, etc., this shaped spatial layout of Xi’an as well as the pathways of tourists into ‘1 pole and 4 axes’ where Tang Chang’an area is the centre. As for most of the great historical sites, they spread around in different directions. Therefore, when we were travelling in between these great historical sites, I felt that the layout of the city which shaped the pathway of us into single and radiant form become a problem. Most of the popular tourist attractions located far away from the city centre like the Terracotta Army Museum(35km away), Huashan Mountain(125km away). Therefore, usually it took an entire day to just one of the historical sites and we have to travel back to the city centre by the exact same path. Moreover, there is a lack of tourist nodes in between the long way of the great site and the city centre. This easily makes us lack interest and feel dull during the journey. To solve this problem, I think the government might also start to develop a round transportation path connecting the great historical sites in the outlying regions.
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