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We present a novel mesh simplification algorithm. It decouples the simplification process into two phases: shape analysis and edge contraction. In the analysis phase, it imposes a hierarchical structure on a surface mesh by uniform hierarchical partitioning, marks the importance of each vertex in the hierarchical structure, and determines the affected regions of each vertex at the hierarchical levels. In the contraction phase, it also divides the simplification procedure into two steps: half-edge contraction and optimization. In the first step, memoryless quadric metric error and the importance of vertices in the hierarchical structure are combined to determine one operation of half-edge contraction. In the second step, it repositions the vertices in the half-edge simplified mesh by minimizing the multilevel synthesized quadric error on the corresponding affected regions from the immediately local to the more global. The experiments illustrate the competitive results.