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Heritage caves rescued from pollution, noise

THE reconstruction on a 6.6-kilometer section of a highway in northern China's Shanxi Province would be completed in August for a detour designed to protect World Cultural Heritage site Yungang Grottoes in Datong City from pollution, transport authorities said yesterday.

The project, begun in May, will cost 83.3 million yuan (US$12.2 million).

The No. 339 provincial-level highway had exposed the cultural heritage site to exhaust pollution and loud traffic noise.

To protect the caves, the provincial government decided to reroute that part of the highway.

According to Wang Zhiqiang, a senior researcher with the province's Research Institute of Transport Science, the original section of the No. 339 highway will be used as a route to provide tourists with access to two-thirds of the grottoes not previously accessible to the public.

The rerouting project is part of a comprehensive conservation program for Yungang Grottoes.


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