…Director Shan Jixiang Reveals
March 1, 2018 By Joseph S. Margai in Beijing
Director of the Palace Museum in China, Shan Jixiang, has revealed that in 2017 sixteen million visited the museum, the highest they have recorded in recent years.
Dr. shan Jixiang, who was delivering a lecture on Chinese culture on the topic: “Imperial Palace under the global perspective” on Tuesday at the Liangmaqiao Diplomatic Office Building, said the museum welcomes the largest number of visitors every year from across the world.
He said there are lots of collections at the museum that provide visitors with a rich cultural experience and memories, adding that over his seven years reign as director of the museum he and his able team have been able to change lots of things to make the museum a convenient and better place for all and sundry.
“Previously people used to stand in queues for hours to buy tickets in order to access the museum, but having employed 30 officers to sell tickets at the museum, visitors can now do so within three minutes,” he said.
He revealed that the museum used to have only a sole chair around the trees for visitors, with many sitting on the floor when they visit the museum, but that they now have 56 rounds of chairs around 56 trees that could accommodate over one thousand visitors at once.
“We wanted to ensure the convenience of our visitors so we have banned the parking of cars in the opening areas of the museum. We have installed 512 signs in the museum to tell people where the bathrooms, crossroads, among others, are situated. We have also increased the number of lady’s bathrooms. We have increased customers experience,” he revealed.
He said that they have improved the interior of the museum with 1,500 chairs to make them more comfortable for 11,000 visitors, adding that the entire place was now very clean as garbage could be removed within two minutes whenever it is dropped by someone.
Director Shan Jixiang recalled that visitors used to complain that inside the museum was very dark, but they have installed electricity, which rays cannot have any adverse effect on the over 100-year-old wooden artifacts in the museum.
He said the Forbidden City was built in 1420 and that they have done a lot to ensure that its original colour and other features are not altered.
“We have paved the road leading to the Forbidden City with flower gardens that are surrounded by steel railings. We have lots of flowers and varieties of fruits planted at the city,” he said.
He said the Palace Museum currently receives 80,000 visitors every day and that they were afraid of stampede but for 92 years now there had not been any case of stampede because of modalities his predecessors had put in place.
Director Shan Jixiang told the audience, comprising journalists from various countries, diplomats, Chinese citizens, among others, that 60% of visitors now buy their tickets online to visit the museum instead of queuing to buy at the booths in the museum.
He added that there were workers who teach visitors how to buy tickets online instead of buying at the museum’s offices.
“We are restoring some ancient buildings and artifacts but they need restoration techniques so that they could not be changed from their original status. We have restored the empresses section of the museum and they are currently restoring the north and south sections of the emperors. A 300-year-old clock had also been restored,” he told the audience.
He said that among the 1,684,490 artifacts in the Palace Museum, there are 361 metre long hospital artifacts.
A diplomat, who was asked to speak on behalf of his colleagues, thanked Director Shan Jixiang and team for the good work they were doing to keep the Palace Museum alive.
The diplomat said the Palace Museum was one of the best in the world and continues to attract visitors on a daily basis.
He the director and his team to keep working in order to continue maintain the standard of the museum.