Hà Nội to restore lake in Temple of Literature complex
Update: Jul 07, 2021
The management centre of the Temple of Literature complex in Hà Nội has announced a plan to restore the cultural values of a lake known as Hồ Văn (Literature Lake) within the site.
Literature Lake is one of the attractions for the entertainment and lifestyle experiences of the Hanoians. Photo hovanvanmieu.vn
The management board will kick off a project this month to restore a now-defunct pavilion on the islet in the lake.
The project includes the restoration of the Phương Đình building and Kim Châu Islet.
The Literature Lake is an important part of the Temple of Literature, covering a total area of 12,000 square metres, including the water area, surrounding gardens, and an islet in the heart of the lake called Kim Châu.
Due to the ravages of time, this space has been damaged and encroached multiple times throughout history, making the preservation work particularly difficult, experts said.
According to Professor Đỗ Văn Trụ, chairman of the Việt Nam Cultural Heritage Association, preserving and promoting the value of the Literature Lake will greatly contribute to the protection of the Temple of Literature site.
However, for a long time, this relic was neglected and seriously affected by environmental pollution, illegal encroachment and construction, said the historical and cultural expert.
Lê Xuân Kiêu, director of the Centre for Cultural and Scientific Activities at the Temple of Literature, said that in recent years, besides some preservation work, the relic has faced serious encroachment, especially around the area near Kim Châu Islet.
"We have 200 days to complete the work of upgrading and restoring the lake," Kiêu said.
"There will be a lot of work to be done such as embellishing the roads in the area of the lake and constructing works to beautify the landscape around it," he added.
In the past, the pavilion on Kim Châu Islet was a venue for scholars in the Thăng Long Imperial City to gather to discuss literary works. 
In 2006, the lake was transferred to the management of the Temple of Literature Cultural Centre.
It wasn't until 2016 that cultural and art activities such as painting, book exhibitions and festivals were held by the lake site, turning it into a popular destination for Hanoians.
However, experts said to make it a proper space for cultural and artistic activities to serve the community and promote the value of the monument, there should be more work carried out to ensure the restoration and preservation of its historical and cultural values. 
The project, which is scheduled to take about 200 days to complete, is under the guidance of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the People's Committee of Hà Nội.
Kiêu said the restoration of Phương Đình building and Kim Châu Islet are essential for the overall Temple of Literature Heritage site as the lake area that plays an important role in the architecture of the whole temple complex and is a promising events site.