Jan 2018

Burma Tourist Building takes shape thanks to skills training

As part of the ongoing regeneration of the former Ministry of Hotels and Tourism building in Yangon, Turquoise Mountain Myanmar aims to train over 1,000 people in traditional building skills and set precedents with the government, the property industry and the public as to how to preserve and use Myanmar’s heritage buildings. The revitalisation of the old Burma Tourist Building in the historic downtown area will create a publicly accessible landmark at the heart of the city.

Visiting Myanmar with the Article 25 Cycle Myanmar group, photographer Grant Smith recently captured the skilled work by local people that is currently taking place to restore the building. 

This week we are showcasing his photographs on FCBStudios Instagram.

Following on-site workshops by master plasterer Philip Gaches, local craftsmen are repairing external and internal plaster work. Visiting from the UK, Philip shared his expert knowledge in the use and conservation of traditional lime plaster. Delivered to craftsmen, masons and keen novices alike, the workshops included approaches to casting, moulding and in-situ modelling.

Closed off for many years, key interventions aim to make this highly visible building far more accessible to the public, while still being respectful to the existing fabric and original features. The ground floor will be completely opened up, returning some of the original grandeur to a building once used as a department store. At roof level, a generous new canopy provides shelter to a public garden and events space, where visitors will be able to enjoy unparalleled views of the neighbouring Sule Pagoda. 

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Burma Tourist Building takes shape thanks to skills training