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Part 1- The dream of the last 50 years

One day in the fall of 2005, passers-by of Beijing saw a huge structure unveiled west of the All-China Federation of Trade Unions building where West Chang´an Avenue meets Baiyun Road.That structure houses the refurbished Capital Museum. On the morning of December 16th of the same year, many people flocked to this huge structure despite cold winds, to wait for the opening of the new Captical Museum. Workers of the new museum had been waiting overnight to ensure the inauguration went well and to decide who their first spectator would be...

Part 2- The final sprint

Builders faced technical challenges one after another as construction progressed. One of the most difficult was the oval bronze cylinder, designed by French architect and engineer Jean-Marie Duthilleul. Deviation must be corrected in every level of steel rods after they are mounted in place. To make sure construction result, a same size model was cast. Another challenge came when the huge structure neared completion: a 22-meter long cornice facing the northern square at the end of the 15,000 square meter roof. Given the huge span, how to guarantee safety is a question...

Part 3- Bronze Evidence

The new Captical Museum, has the most comprehensive collection to reflect the history of Beijing. Its exhibits cover a span of half-million years, from the skull of prehistoric Peking Man unearthed in Zhoukoudian, to the microphone used for the occasion when Mao Zedong declared to the world in 1949 that "the Chinese people have stood up". Some twenty thousand years ago, during the transition period from the Old Stone Age to the Neolithic Age, our ancestors underwent a significant change in lifestyle...

Part 4- The imperial city

In 2005, Museum workers went to Jinling in southwest Beijing to transport the newly unearthed stone coffins dating from the Jin dynasty(1115-1234), but were stopped by the local people. The coffins were a proof of the merging of the Han and Nuzhen peoples in Northern China, and also of the city´s birth 850 years earlier under the name of Zhongdu. The two coffins were supposed to be moved to the new Capital Museum in Beijing. But unexpectedly, the local people stopped us and their argument seemed reasonable...

Part 5- Guard of civilization

In 2001, the cornerstone of the new Capital Museum was laid. The British Museum announced it was going to make the new Capital Museum the venue fro China stop of its global exhibition tour. Many Chinese museums had competed for that but Neil McGregor, Curator of the British Museum, decided that the Capital Museum would be the right place. He had read through the information about the new Capital Museum. McGregor was impressed by the broad vision and thinking behind the new Capital Museum in Beijing...