Document Type



The historic qilou buildings are essential to the people in Southern China. Unfortunately, due to some of the urban renewal policies, many of the qilou districts have been either demolished or abandoned. For years, many scholars had written books and articles about how to preserve these significant historic urban elements. However, these studies failed to include examinations of the historic preservation program in other countries or the existing ones in China. This thesis was written in the hope of filling the gap. This study discusses the historical developments of the qilou buildings and their significances in four selected cities: Guangzhou, Macau, Meizhou, and Kaiping. This study then includes analysis on whether creating the US- based Main Street Program, and using the UNESCO World Heritage Sites model to manage these qilou districts are feasible in the selected cities.