China starts renovating Norbulingka pałace 

Norbulingka, the summer palace of the Dalai Lama undergoes renovation. Image: Jigme Dorje/Xinhua.

DHARAMSALA, 22 April: Norbulingka, the Tibetan spiritual leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s traditional summer palace is undergoing a large scale renovation, according to a report by Chinese state media, Xinhua.

The renovation project which will cost around 5.9 million US dollars was approved by the Chinese government to gild more than 855 square meters of the golden roofs, renovate over 10,000 square meters of traditional Tibetan waterproof roofs, and repair affiliated cultural relics.

Exposure to wind, sun, and rain has partly damaged the iconic Norbulingka palace’s parts of gold-plated roofs and their supporting facilities while some of the cultural relics have oxidized and blackened, the report said citing Penpa Droma, an official with Norbulingka’s management office.

She stated in the report that “the restoration project was approved in 2017 following years of research, and that the preparatory work was launched in late 2020.”

She added that a supervision team with nearly 30 people has been formed to ensure the quality of the project and the safety of cultural relics. 

Located just a kilometer away from Potala, the winter palace of the Dalai Lama at the bank of River Kyichu in Lhasa, Norbulingka Palace is known to offer the best landscapes in the region.

Built-in the mid-18th century, the summer palace of the Dalai Lama is spread over an area of 360,000 square meters. It was declared a world heritage site by UNESCO in 2001. It last underwent a renovation in 2002.

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