The Zhejiang Provincial Development and Reform Commission recently announced a plan to launch a cultural rejuvenation project on the province's thousand-year-old towns.
The rejuvenation is meant to promote culture, preserve cultural relics, and pass on intangible cultural heritage items.
The province plans to establish benchmarks for cultural rejuvenation, tourism, and urban governance in the ancient towns over the next five years.
In late February, the Zhejiang Provincial Development and Reform Commission published a list of the first millennium-old towns to pilot the rejuvenation project.
On the list were a total of 11 ancient towns across the province: Xindeng town in Hangzhou's Fuyang district, Meicheng town in Jiande, Cicheng town in Ningbo's Jiangbei district, Fenglin town in Yongjia county, Qianyuan town in Deqing county, Yanguan town in Haining, Chongfu town in Tongxiang, Fenghui town in Shaoxing's Shangyu district, Zhixiang town in Yongkang, Bihu town in Lishui's Liandu district, and Gushi town in Songyang county.
All towns on the list had to be the seat of at least one county throughout history, have well-preserved historic landscapes covering an area of at least one square kilometer, and boast unique cultural traditions in commerce, literature, or academics.