BEIJING, April 16 -- Lingguan Mansion complex at Jiulong Temple in Mianzhu, Sichuan province.
The 16-story structure was said to be the tallest wooden pagoda in Asia. No casualties were reported in the incident, and the cause of the blaze is under investigation. According to local media reports, the original Lingguan Mansion was built during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and destroyed in a magnitude 8 earthquake that hit Sichuan in 2008. The temple, with what was considered the tallest wooden tower in Asia, later became restored but remained under construction when the fire broke out. The cause of the blaze is still unknown.
MOSCOW, April 16 -- Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has offered French President Emmanuel Macron the help of the best Russian specialists in rebuilding the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris.
Also Putin conveyed his condolences over the fire that damaged France’s national symbol, the Kremlin press office reported on Tuesday. "The Notre Dame is France’s historical symbol, an invaluable treasure of the European and world culture, one of the most important Christian shrines," Putin stressed in his telegram. "The disaster that happened in Paris at night caused pain in the hearts of Russians," the telegram reads. "Putin has expressed the hope that it will be possible to rebuild the cathedral and offered to send the best Russian specialists with the extensive experience of restoring world cultural heritage monuments, including the works of medieval architecture, to France," the Kremlin press office said.
PARIS, April 15 -- Historic French cathedral Notre Dame has been ravaged by a huge blaze.
Dramatic images and video show the 850-year-old building ablaze as a huge emergency operation was launched. The shocking scene in the French capital unfolded this afternoon, and flames have been seen coming from the two bell towers. Officials have cleared the area around Notre Dame, a City Hall spokesman confirmed. It is not yet known if anyone has been injured in the fire. Firefighters are helpless to bring the blaze under control because the flames are so far away, according to reports. Le Monde journalist Raphaëlle Bacqué reports that the fire is too far away for crews to be able to act. It is not known if anyone is inside the building, which closed to the public at 6pm local time, 50 minutes before the blaze was first reported.
BEIJING, January 3 -- A cluster of 12 royal tombs dating back more than 3,000 years was unearthed in northern China's Shanxi province, local archaeological authorities confirmed Thursday.
According to Bai Shuzhang, a leading researcher in the excavation team, the findings offer new keys to the investigation of the Yin capital of the Shang Dynasty, renowned for its great discovery of oracle bones. The team carried out an urgent excavation of the old complex in August 2017, given the tombs had suffered significant damage with four of its five major chambers looted. More than a hundred objects made of copper, ceramics; porcelain and jade were also unearthed in the tombs. The Shang dynasty ruled northern China for more than six centuries. They lived in a series of towns along the Huang He and had the capital in Anyang, a city with many palaces and temples, built mainly from carved wood. The Zhou dynasty replaced Shang in 1122 BC.
TOKYO, November 15 -- In most major cities, interacting with your neighbors is equal parts chance and choice. Maybe you’ll pass them from time to time in the hallway, but for the most part, city living is a highly-secluded endeavor if you want it to be.
That’s not the case at this new development in Mihama, Japan, which is built to encourage interaction between residents. The architects at Studio Velocity designed the building with ten detached units that straddle the line between apartment and house.
All of the units have a living room with glass doors that slide open onto a wooden deck facing a communal courtyard. The doors of one home are steps away from the deck of another, effectively blurring the lines between private and communal space. The arrangement, while certainly not for everyone, has been well-received by residents, the architects claim. On a recent visit, the designers observed their handiwork: “One woman was playing in the garden with a baby boy, the neighbor’s son. Two families, composed by two mothers and three elementary school children, gathered to have a late lunch together. One of them, asked by her mother, brought food she had cooked to another family next door.”