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2013.9.26发表于《纽约时报》文章Tangzha: Relics evoke memories of industrial era  

2013-11-06 10:45:10|  分类: 部分新闻作品 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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By DING CONGRONG and FU CHAO
As a relic of the industrialization of
modern China, the Tangzha Industrial
Ruins in Nantong in East China’s Jiangsu
province, is credited with being a cradle of
the nation’s industrialization reborn as a
living museum.
Drawing on an aura of historical
significance conveyed by the remains,
a cultural and creative industry park
has been built and is attracting public
attention.
The county of Tangzha lies in Gangzha
district in the northwestern part of
Nantong, neighboring the Yangtze River
to the south and the Yellow Sea to the
east. It is just a one-hour drive from
Shanghai.
The county has an area of 25.96 square
kilometers and is known as China’s best
relic from the industrial era in terms of the
preservation of architecture by renowned
architect Wu Liangyong.
The character zha in Tangzha is a
Chinese character meaning “water gate”.
The site was once barren land around one
of the water gates of the Tongyang Canal,
a famous ancient canal running through
three cities in Jiangsu province.
The Tangzha Industrial Ruins are the
remains of the Tangzha Industrial Park. It
is the best-preserved industrial park ruins
in contemporary China and a record of
the country’s industrial transformation.
Founded by Zhang Jian (1853-1926),
renowned as a key historical figure who
made significant contribution to China’s
modern light industry, the Tangzha
Industrial Park used to be China’s most
important industrial park.
Nantong was regarded as the “pioneer
city of modern industry in China” when
China was going through the earliest
phase of its industrialization.
Zhang, the Nantong native, was
appointed minister of enterprise under
the temporary government of the
Republic of China.
In 1913, Zhang became the minister
of agriculture and commerce. The
ideal he advocated — “enterprise as
mother, education as father” — has had
a profound impact on Chinese history.
The more than 20 companies and
more than 370 schools that he founded
have made a significant contribution
to industrialization and education in
modern China.
Zhang started a miniature industrial
revolution when he founded the Dasheng
Textile Company in Tangzha. Later, more
companies and factories were set up
around the company, turning Tangzha
into an industrial complex.
With a modern vision, Zhang developed
the canal and other transportation
systems. He also built markets, a school
and hospital to make the industrial park
a small town where people could live as
well as do business.
Though it has been more than 100
years since Zhang set foot in Tangzha
and there has been some reconstruction,
the Tangzha Industrial Ruins still have the
basic shape and structure of Tangzha
Industrial Park as it used to be, a rare feat
of preservation in China.
Memories of Nantong as the cradle
of a burgeoning modern industry can
be triggered by historical sites like the
workshops of Dasheng Textile Company,
Zisheng Iron Factory and the Dada Vessel
Factory.
These sites, though remains of the
past, carry on the physical and spiritual
legacy of Nantong.
The lasting influence of entrepreneurs
like Zhang lies not only in the remains
of factories but also in the views of
politicians and economists.
More than just the record of
industrialization, it also tells a story about
the life and cultures of people who were
living there at that time.
Affiliated schools and hospitals as well
as the dormitories of the textile or iron
factories can be seen around Tangzha.
The ancient streets, such as Gao’an
Street and Fuxing Street, are scattered
with the former homes of entrepreneurs
and celebrities of that time.
According to some historical scholars,
these buildings and streets are visible and
tangible history, highlighting the cultural
and historical value of Tangzha as well as
Nantong.
Today, to keep the historical and
cultural value while bringing something
new to the old industrial site, the Nantong
city government has embarked on a
series of reconstruction projects.
At the end of 2012, on the old site of
some of Zhang’s factories, the 1895
Cultural and Creative Industries Park was
built and opened to the public.
In the park, old buildings have been
kept as they were, but are being used
by the new generation of adventurous
entrepreneurs to do business.
According to Zhang Guohua, mayor of
Nantong, the 1895 Culture and Creative
Industry Park is going to preserve the
Tangzha Industrial Ruins.
By keeping Tangzha old and new,
Nantong is trying to develop an alternative
means of urban planning.
Contact the writers at dingcongrong
@chinadaily.com.cn

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