The story appears on

Page A4

February 11, 2011

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Metro » Entertainment and Culture

Locals accuse property tycoon of demolishing part of church

A PROPERTY tycoon has been "cursed" by angry web users for demolishing part of a historic downtown church - although it transpires that the actual demolition took place before he had even bought the site.

Pan Shiyi, a Chinese real estate developer, unleashed the wrath of Internet users when he published a picture of cranes and temporary structures by All Saints Church on Fuxing Road M. on his microblog on Wednesday.

The piece had been reposted more than 1,000 times by late yesterday, with hundreds of web users accusing Pan of destroying historical buildings.

Some web users even went as far as to curse Pan, saying he would "go to hell" for destroying part of the church.

Other web users said they were saddened to see the buildings demolished. "I felt heartache," said Li Lian, a nearby resident. "It's like seeing people being killed."

Li said she used to pass the area every day and enjoy the view, but now she has to take a different route as she was saddened by what she saw.

She uploaded pictures of the area in the past and expressed regretful sentiments, which were echoed by many Shanghai residents who have lived in the area for decades.

Nearby residents said that the stone-gate buildings had been in good condition.

In response, Pan said that his firm bought the project from another developer last November, which means he should not be held responsible for the demolition.

Public records show that the demolition started on the 20,084-square-meter block - surrounded by Fuxing Road M., Danshui Road, Hefei Road and Madang Road - in 2004.

The area was first designated to be made into a residential complex but was turned into a commercial compound later in 2005.

City cultural relics protection officials said that the church is a historical building on the protection list, while the stone-gated shikumen houses were not.

Shikumen houses combine Western and Chinese elements and first appeared in Shanghai in the 1860s.

Church officials claimed that only the main hall is on the protected list, while affiliated buildings are not.

A two-story office -building in the church compound has been removed to make more room for the -commercial project. The developer has promised to build a new office building closer to the church, a church worker said.

Wang Anshi, an architectural historian, said: "The plot is in the Hengshan Road, Fuxing Road historical and cultural preservation zone and the whole flavor should be maintained."

He said that the deal was made in 2004 when the city was less conscious of protecting historical zones.

Wang said the city government must keep its promise to maintain old buildings and urged the developer to coordinate the appearance of new buildings with existing structures.

The church was built in 1925 under the supervision of a missionary from the American Saints Association.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend