The Tibet Museum officially launched the expanding plan on Oct 28 to extend its current size. The completion of the new building is expected to be in 2020.
The project will double the present site from 23, 000m² to 58, 000m² at a cost of 660 million yuan (about 100 million US dollars). The reopening museum will be able to accommodate as many as 7, 000 visitors per day.
Liu Yi, one of the designers, said that the museum will maintain its traditional Tibetan style in the outlook, however, it will use solar energy for heating, taking advantage of the abundant sunlight in Lhasa.
First opened to the public in 1999, the Tibet Museum was situated directly below the famous Potala Palace on the corner of Norbulingkha Road in Lhasa. It houses over 520, 000 pieces of artifacts covering everything amongst jade, pottery, Tibetan-Buddha statues, musical instruments and sculptures, featuring quite delicate ancient thangkas (Tibetan sacred paintings on cotton or silks). It’s the largest museum in Tibet.
The museum has been closed since December 2016. The collections will be displayed on tour exhibition at other museums in the region during the years of construction.