Beijing plans 2nd administrative center
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Tannet read From China Daily that BEIJING on Saturday announced that it would speed up construction of a “subsidiary administrative center” while promising to limit its population to 23 million people.
The announcement was made as the city Saturday concluded a plenary session of its Party committee, during which a guideline was passed on promoting the integration of Beijing with its neighboring Hebei Province and Tianjin Municipality.
Li Shixiang, executive vice mayor of Beijing, said the “subsidiary administrative center” will be based in Tongzhou, a suburban district in the city’s southeast.
The district is adjacent to the commercial-heavy urban district of Chaoyang and has advantages in infrastructure and transportation among the city’s suburbs.
“In particular, the spatial structure of the six urban districts will be changed. For example, now our citizens need to buy vegetables, see a doctor in their community, park their vehicles, but there’s no room for it. We must have space for what the citizens need most to increase their happiness index.”
Li also said the construction is not as easy as constructing several buildings and moving administrative functions there.
“It is about developing what should be developed. It’s about spatial functions and overall functions. All of them need rigorous planning and full debate. I believe next we will create a good environment ... In this way, we can establish a subsidiary administrative center of Beijing with scientific planning and orderly management,” Li said.
The guideline also said the city must stick to its population control target of 23 million people by 2020. The city’s total population stood at 21.5 million in 2014, according to official data.
The Chinese capital has sought to address its severe “urban diseases,” such as traffic congestion and air pollution, by curbing its population growth and moving some facilities to nearby regions.
The announcement said moving out some of Beijing’s non-capital functions would be a top priority in the strategy of integrating Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei that China has been promoting.
Beijing has banned hospitals in downtown Dongcheng and Xicheng districts from adding beds, State broadcaster CCTV reported Saturday. Beijing Tian Tan Hospital in the downtown Dongcheng District will be moved to the south ring road in Fengtai District.
Over the past year, a number of wholesale markets in the city’s central areas were shut down or relocated. The capital has also accelerated the pace of industrial restructuring and took a more stringent attitude to floating population registration.
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