Fire damages oldest building at Tsinghua (2)

08:54, November 15, 2010      

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A 75-year-old man, surnamed Shan, on Sunday shows one of his photos, which was taken in front of the building last year.

According to the spokesman for the university's news center, the main body of the building remains intact and the renovation of the building is expected to be finished in time for the centenary celebrations in April 2011.

Fang Hongrong, 32, who studied in the department of engineering mechanics between 1998 and 2008, drove two hours to get a glimpse of the building when he heard the news of the fire. "I was surfing the Internet when I read the news. I didn't believe it till I reached here," he said.

"I feel sad," said a 67-year-old professor and ex-student, who did not wish to be named. "I still remember the days when we used to study in this very building - the sunlight creeping in through the massive windows, the sound of people walking on the wooden floor."

The "Tsinghua College" building, which stands adjacent to several buildings where classes are held, had been under renovation for the centenary celebrations since August.

The police are investigating the cause and the damage is currently being assessed.

"Many old buildings in the university are under repair for the centennial celebrations. The projects are complicated and the workers are on a deadline, which is nearing," Huang Weixi, a student of the university's school of art and design, said, adding she was afraid more such accidents may occur due to human error.

Xinhua contributed to this story.

<i>Source: China Daily</i>
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