WIT Press

Conservation And Vulnerability Analysis Of Architectural Heritage On Small Islands: A Case Study Of Kinmen


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571 - 582




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Paper DOI



WIT Press


Y. J. Tseng


The military control throughout the nearly half-century cross-strait stand-off during the Cold War since 1949 has left Kinmen with a large number of unintentionally preserved traditional Minnan (Southern Fujian) buildings and villages along with an extensive group of military buildings, battlefield infrastructure at this forefront against communist invasion. The island has a rich architectural heritage. However, substantive changes took place after the termination of military administration in 1992 and the commencement of Mini Three Links in 2001. Kinmen’s conservation of traditional architecture has thereafter been exposed to the impact of cheap materials and architectural styles from the Chinese Mainland. One consequent change is that the traditional construction industry is now relying more on the fast and cheap customized production than local craftsmanship. The local craftsmen are fading from the scene as it is difficult for them to adapt to new work process and find apprentices to transfer the know-how. The current situation in the industry is affecting the development of traditional architecture conservation, bringing out issues such as outdated conservation ideas, endangered traditional craftsmanship and insufficient resources. The change in architectural thinking underlines the vulnerable nature of traditional architecture conservation and cultural resilience. This paper studies the vulnerability of the local architectural heritage in the context of the particular background of Kinmen Island under the impact from the dominant Mainland Chinese economics and culture.


military administration, traditional architecture, mini three links, traditional craftsmen