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Vietnam to spend over $5mn on maintenance of Hue Imperial Citadel palace

Wednesday, November 24, 2021, 10:57 GMT+7
Vietnam to spend over $5mn on maintenance of Hue Imperial Citadel palace

Thai Hoa Palace, one of the most significant buildings in the Imperial Citadel of Hue, Vietnam's national landmark in central Thua Thien-Hue Province, is undergoing maintenance, estimated to cost over US$5 million, to address an accumulation of damage it has taken over the years.

The maintenance and renovation of Thai Hoa Palace commenced on Tuesday, as prescribed by a plan from the Hue Monuments Conservation Center, the agency in charge of preserving the palace.

Thai Hoa is the most important palace at the Hue Imperial Citadel, part of the Complex of Hue Monuments, and was the coronation venue of 13 kings of the Nguyen Dynasty (1802-1945).

It is also considered one of the finest examples of royal architecture in the Nguyen era.

Emperor Gia Long, the first emperor of the Nguyen Dynasty, started the construction of Thai Hoa Palace on February 2, 1805, three years after his enthronement. The project was completed in October 1805.

In 1833, when Emperor Minh Mang reconstructed the whole imperial city, Thai Hoa Palace was moved to the south and rebuilt to be more imposing.

The front and main hall of Thai Hoa Palace, one of the most important buildings in the Imperial Citadel of Hue in the central Thua Thien-Hue Province, Vietnam. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

The front and main hall of Thai Hoa Palace, one of the most important buildings in the Imperial Citadel of Hue in Thua Thien-Hue Province, central Vietnam. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

Scaffoldings are used to support the pillars of Thai Hoa Palace in the central Thua Thien-Hue Province, Vietnam. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

Scaffolding is used to support the pillars of Thai Hoa Palace in Thua Thien-Hue Province, central Vietnam. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

A dragon ornamentation on top of Thai Hoa Palace is shown in a state of deterioration. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

Dragon ornamentation on top of Thai Hoa Palace is shown in a state of deterioration. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

However, the structure is significantly weathered after over 200 years of existence, despite repeated maintenance efforts from relevant authorities. 

Tiles on the western side of Thai Hoa Palace’s roof were loosened after the historic storms and floods in October and early November 2020, according to Vo Le Nhat, director of the Hue Monuments Conservation Center.

Scaffolding is used to support the pillars of Thai Hoa Palace in the central Thua Thien-Hue Province, Vietnam. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

Scaffolding is used to support the pillars of Thai Hoa Palace in Thua Thien-Hue Province, central Vietnam. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

The interior of Thai Hoa Palace, one of the most important edifices in the Imperial Citadel of Hue in the central Thua Thien-Hue Province, Vietnam. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

The interior of Thai Hoa Palace, one of the most important edifices in the Imperial Citadel of Hue in Thua Thien-Hue Province, central Vietnam. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

The throne is shown inside Thai Hoa Palace in the central Thua Thien-Hue Province, Vietnam. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

A throne is shown inside Thai Hoa Palace in Thua Thien-Hue Province, central Vietnam. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

The front view of Thai Hoa Palace in the central Thua Thien-Hue Province, Vietnam. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

The front view of Thai Hoa Palace in Thua Thien-Hue Province, central Vietnam. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

A dragon ornamentation on top of Thai Hoa Palace is shown in a state of deterioration. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

A dragon ornament on top of Thai Hoa Palace is shown in a state of deterioration. Photo: Nhat Linh / Tuoi Tre

Starting Tuesday, a large-scale renovation effort will address issues with multiple building components, including the foundation, enclosing walls, roofing, beam and wood structures, interior decor items and lacquer ornamentation, the main Salutation Court, walkways, banisters, and landscaping.

The project will cover an area of 71,000 sqm and is estimated to cost VND128 billion ($5.3 million), to be taken from the public budget and other sources.

It is expected to wrap up by August 2025. 

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