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Liulangzhuang: if a golf course is built, luxury villas will follow

December 20, 2013

konjaku: for the time being, this ends my attempt to record the demolition of Liulangzhuang and the transfer of its residents to its replacement, “Liulangzhuang New Village.”

Does the public really approve of tearing down Liulangzhuang to protect the Summer Palace?

2011-03

Han Ying

http://hanyingha.blogspot.com/2011/03/blog-post_28.html

Liulangzhung has a long history. During the Northern Sung people gave it the elegant name Willow-wave [Liulangzhuang, 柳浪庄] village, because the silken strands of willow on the embankments outside the village blew in the wind like light green waves. When the military hero Yang Liulang [Yang Yanzhao] passed through on his way to attack Khitan, he tied his horse to a stone lion in the village, and to commemorate this the village name was changed to Liulang [六郎 his nickname, plus 庄, village ] In the Qing, Empress Dowager Ci Xi was going by boat to the Summer Palace, and when she heard the name of the village after inquiring from the boatman, she thought it was “Six wolves village” [六狼庄] and she demanded the name be changed to Jixiangzhuang, “Good fortune village,” because she wondered if she was going to be the sheep the wolves would eat. However, her command was not fully understood, and not followed.In 1949 after the liberation it was renamed “Plentiful Commune” and during the cultural revolution it was again renamed “Red Army Village,” but none of these names stuck. The people who lived there proudly upheld the name Liulangzhuang [六郎庄] through these vicissitudes of history.

 

 

Liulangzhung village is in a beautiful setting. It has good air and water, situated  by the Yongding river network, with rich historical artifacts nearby.

Agricultural products: it is famous for its “west of capitol paddy rice,” Beijing ducks, lotus root, water chestnut, and its two old temples, in a state of disrepair for many years. However this village is faced with demolition, just like Tangjialing and Beiwu.

 

2009-12-05 The newspapers came out with the news that Liulangzhuang would be demolished “to protect the Summer Palace.” The village would be replaced by a green zone.

 

Certainly the Summer Palace area should be protected, but to accomplish that, by what stroke of logic does it require that Liulangzhuang has to completely demolished and its inhabitants displaced? To change the area around the Summer Palace into a de-populated zone, the so-called green zone, is all a deception, clouding peoples’ minds and emotions. Rather, by driving out the people, the land becomes available as real estate, open to development, to be carved up, partitioned, and made into new sources of income. If a golf course is built, it is certain that luxury villas will follow. For the sake of a life of pleasure for the few, the Liulangzhuang villagers must sacrifice the homesteads and land which came from their ancestors…The pace of development and commercialization is so fast that a project like this, transforming a whole area, can by coincidence be fully completed during a party or government official’s term of office, giving them an impressive accomplishment to ink into their official record. Once the thing is done, it is too late to do anything about the deleterious effects of corruption and abuses of power that were woven into the process from the start.

Wanliu Golf Course

Wanliu Golf Course

Wanliu Golf Course

Wanliu Golf Course

Wanliu Golf Course

Wanliu Golf Course

 

 

If the leadership considered the interests of the people, they might find a way to protect the Summer Palace and the surrounding ecosystem in a way that does not involve forcible displacement of the people who after all live within that ecoystem. But since the leadership only think of adding to their record of achievements and bolstering their own positions, they lose the peoples’ trust. They destroy the buildings the people built with their own sweat and toil, demolish their neighborhoods, erase their community and culture, their history, in the name of urban rural unification and the construction of a green zone.

 

In the same way as the Summer Palace, Liulangzhung should be protected. The villagers should be able to live and work in peace. There should be a guarantee that the replacement housing for them will be built on the village site, and that they will not be forced to move to another location. This is the villagers’ true opinion. Also that after demolition they hope their standard of living will not go down.

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