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10 October 2018—On the ninety-third anniversary of the establishment of the Palace Museum, the Museum’s administration officially commenced the North Museum Project. This major development also coincides with the fifth anniversary of the Museum's ongoing campaign “Safe Museum, Secure Palace” (Ping’an Gugong), which began five years ago. The launching ceremony for the new project was attended by Minister Luo Shugang of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Director Shan Jixiang of the Palace Museum, Director Liu Yuzhu of the National Cultural Heritage Administration, Beijing’s Vice-Mayor Wang Ning, Party Secretary Yu Jun and other officials of the Haidian District government, and representatives of affiliated organizations and project partners.
The Palace Museum has selected a site in the vicinity of Xiyuhe Village at Xibeiwang in Haidian District in northwest Beijing for the construction of the North Museum, which will provide additional venues for the exhibition of the Forbidden City’s art and allow the museum to develop in a variety of innovative ways. This new site is a core element of the “Safe Museum, Secure Palace” campaign. With over 100,000 square meters of planned architectural space, the North Museum will include spacious exhibition galleries, state-of-the-art conservation workshops, collection storage facilities, digital media offices, and visitor service areas.
During the launch ceremony, Minister Luo Shugang instructed the Museum’s administration to strive for excellence and promote an attitude of reverence as the “Safe Museum, Secure Palace” campaign moves forward and the North Museum is realized. Additionally, Director Shan Jixiang explained how the new site will serve as an important center for art conservation and play a vital role in the care of the Museum’s vast collection of invaluable national treasures. Shan also highlighted how the new exhibition spaces will be instrumental in educating the public about intangible cultural heritage and reinforce the ongoing initiatives of creating multifaceted media offerings for the Digital Palace Museum.
“Safe Museum, Secure Palace” (Ping’an Gugong)
The “Safe Museum, Secure Palace” campaign was authorized by the State Council in April 2013 and serves to maintain the Palace Museum’s cultural heritage, enhance the Museum’s exhibitions and visitor services, and support the Museum’s sustained development. The projects carried out as a part of the campaign include improvements to infrastructure and facilities necessary for the security and management of the Museum and its collection. The historic North Museum Project is the latest development in a series of smaller-scale projects. The culmination of the campaign will be the year 2020, when the Museum celebrates the 600th anniversary of the construction of the Forbidden City.
Translated and edited by Adam J. Ensign, Zhuang Ying, and Kang Xiaolu