Chongqing- Huangjueya is now a renovated old street popular with tourists on Nanshan 'South Mountain' within the Chongqing Urban Area. In ancient times, it was an important courier station for merchant caravans transporting wares between Chongqing and the provinces of Guizhou, Guangxi, and Yunnan. It was also a strategic center for operations during the War of Resistance when Chongqing was China's provisional capital. In recent years, Huangjueya has been restored to its former glory after falling into dereliction in past decades.
The restoration project of Huangjieya Old Street involved the renovation of 175 unique buildings differing in style and height. Wood, brick, and stone were the principal materials used to restore the old structures.
An important goal was to retain the old street's historic feel while restoring the buildings to their unique style and appeal. Workers had to vary the techniques and materials they used for different architectural structures and improve the interior and exterior to suit modern practicality while also preserving the historical appeal to the maximum extent.
In order to guarantee safety, structural repairs were made to category C buildings, while category D structures were torn down and fully rebuilt to resemble their former appearance as closely as possible. Project designer Huang Geng is from the architecture faculty of the Sichuan Fine Arts Institute. He worked to maintain the Chongqing-Guizhou style of the old post road whilst preserving the experience of Bayu life.
According to historical records, the Huangge Ancient Road was the first of its kind in old Bayu Country and originally traced back to the Tang Dynasty. The road was first built over the Song and Yuan Dynasties and later flourished in the Ming and Qing.
Ancient Ba Country bronze, porcelain, silk, embroidery, and other textiles were ferried across the Yangtze River by merchants, who then transported them by caravans through to Guizhou, Guangxi, and Yunnan via the Huangge Ancient Road. Likewise, goods such as tea and medicines from these provinces entered Chongqing through the same channels.
In ancient times, Huangjueya was a steep and rugged mountain road, and so the starting point was a location where porters and caravans stopped to rest. People eventually set up buildings here to offer services, which became the origin of Huangjuaya Old Street.
The first renovation phase focused on 15 buildings of special historical and cultural background, such as the restoration of former residences belonging to renowned figures.
The former residence of Li Kui'an is a courtyard mansion which has also been restored during the project. As the chairman of Ba County Council in 1925, Li Kui'an was the first to propose the establishment of Chongqing University. The restored mansion looks magnificent, with a grand front entrance featuring engraved columns and a patio that retains its historical charm.
Towards the western end of Huangjueya, behind an old alleyway, is the famous Chinese novelist's birthplace popularly known as San Mao, or Echo Chen. She was born here in 1943 and later moved to Taiwan five years later with her parents. She became famous for 23 literary works, including Sahara Story, Traversing Mountains, and Rivers, No More Monsoon Rains, and Billowing Mortal World.
The former residence of the writer Sanmao is located on a back street of Huangjueya. The old wooden house has been fully restored and sets off perfectly against the lush natural surroundings' backdrop. The house features a new plaque, and workers followed the principle that unless the wood had gone rotten, they would only use old cypress wood for repairs.
Old cypress wood was used to restore her birthplace's original structure, set amongst lush natural surroundings in this serene corner. Visitors may explore the charmingly antiquated rooms and interior displays in return for a 10 Yuan souvenir postcard.
Along the old street, the street lamps are scattered in a picturesque disorder, which fits nicely with individual style and appeal buildings. One obvious departure from the typical wooden structures is the Yunnan Chamber of Commerce, which has a glasshouse design. During the War of Resistance, the hall was closed down as a result of heavy air bombardment.
Over the years, Huangjueya developed gradually from a courier station, barracks, and rest area into an ancient street where merchants gathered in droves, reaching a pinnacle in the Ming and Qing Dynasties. In the fifteenth year of Emperor Guangxu (1889), Ba County established Chongwen's town due to the prosperity of Huangjuaya. Today, Chongwen is the large town that still occupies Nanshan ‘South Mountain's central plateau.’
Chongqing was later opened as a port in the 17th year of Emperor Guangxu (1891), which saw chambers of commerce from Guizhou and Yunnan established in Huangjueya Ancient Street. During the War of Resistance, Chongqing became the temporary national capital, and Huangjueya assumed the Nationalist Government's role as a command center. As a result, the old street became a popular location where scholars and patriots flocked to live and gather together.
Now the restoration project is complete, Huangjueya has become a popular tourist spot amongst Nanshan's picturesque surroundings and is yet another great addition to the feast of night views in Mountain City.
Huangjueya Old Street is easily accessible from Chongwen Road that runs the Nanshan plateau from north to south. Alternatively, the Huangge Ancient Road is still a popular walkway with two entrances at Shangxin Street and Haitangxi, both near the foot of Nanshan. The lush ancient road climbs gently up the mountainside and connects at the western tip of Huangjueya.
The wooden Guizhou Chamber of Commerce building stands majestically at the main entrance to Huangjueya and is home to a museum with displays of famous residents, historical culture, and tourist trails featuring the top places of interest for visitors to find and learn about.
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