Long March spirit revived
Nearly 50 youths will retrace part of the route of the Red Army's famous Long March this summer to mark the 70th anniversary of the historic event.
Organizers with the Chinese Youth League said the march participants, mostly university students and their teachers, will be divided into seven groups who will set out to different stops along the route.
More than 100,000 Red Army soldiers began a 9,600-kilometer trek in October 1934 in order to evade the Kuomintang army. The Red Army managed to transfer forces from areas along the Yangtze River to a base in Shaanxi Province after finishing the march 12 months later.
The youths will visit towns and places along the route, including Ruijin of Jiangxi Province, Zunyi of Guizhou Province and even Jiajin Snow Mountain in Sichuan Province - the first snow mountain taken by the Red Army. --(7/21)
1st Taiwan-Mainland direct cargo flight lands in Shanghai
The first direct cargo charter flight from Taiwan touched down in Shanghai early this morning, marking a breakthrough in cross-Strait relations since 1949.
A Boeing 747-400 from China Airlines, Taiwan's largest air carrier, landed in Pudong International Airport at 0:33 a.m. Thursday after just over two hours and 10 minutes, bringing 61 tons of chip equipment to a factory established by a Taiwan company. --(7/20)
2010 Expo advisers hired
Seventeen advisers were appointed for the 2010 World Expo performances yesterday in Beijing.
The Expo advisers, including renowned movie director Feng Xiaogang, will discuss the theme of the Expo and the overall exhibition plan.
The event's organizing committee held an appointing ceremony yesterday.
Other advisers include, Wu Jianzhong, director of the Shanghai Library; Wang Lu and Chen Jining, professors from Tsing Hua University; Zheng Shiling, a renowned architecture expert from Tongji University; and Chen Xiejun, a curator from Shanghai Museum. --(7/19)
More hot weather
Yesterday's hot weather with plenty of sunshine will continue for several more days, according to the Shanghai Meteorological Bureau. Today's high is expected to reach 35 degrees Celsius, with a low of 28 degrees.
Rain and thunderstorms are expected to hit some local areas this afternoon and evening, the bureau said. Yesterday was this year's ninth day with temperatures exceeding 35 degrees. The bureau issued a yellow heat alert at 2:01pm, when the temperature reached 35.3 degrees. The alert was cancelled at 3:25pm. --(7/18)
Greenery to cover suburbs
Residents in Shanghai's suburbs will soon enjoy greenery space at their doorsteps after a five year plan is fully implemented, said Ma Yun'an, director of the Shanghai Greenery Administrative Bureau.
Over the recent years, the city government has raised investments in suburban greenery construction, with a total of 34,880 hectares of forests completed to date.
During the 11th Five Year Plan period (2006-2010), ten model towns, 50 model villages and 500 model households will be constructed in suburban areas, along with 10 town-level parks being constructed or expanded.
So far, greenery construction has not only improved the rural environment, but has boosted the tourism sector and created more jobs for farmers as well. --(7/17)
Beginning yesterday, international exhibition participants can enjoy one-stop customs and quarantine inspection services in Pudong for their imported exhibits care of the Pudong International Exhibits Supervision Service Center.
When exhibits arrive at the center, near the Waigaoqiao Port, they can be checked by the customs and quarantine departments together. In the past, exhibits were scattered in different warehouses throughout the city. --(7/15)
Storm brings cool relief
Shanghai is expected to be affected today by the fringes of Tropical Storm Bilis, this year's fourth tropical storm, and enjoy a relatively cool weekend, said the Shanghai Meteorological Bureau yesterday.
Rain is forecast to hit some areas of the city today, with the top temperature of 32 degrees Celsius after a low of 27 degrees.
Rain is expected to continue until Sunday. The top temperature on Saturday will be 32 degrees and 34 degrees on Sunday, said the bureau.
The city is forecast to suffer hot weather at the beginning of next week, when Bilis leaves, with a top temperature of 35 to 36 degrees from next Monday to Wednesday. It will be cloudy to sunny.
Formed in the northwest Pacific on Sunday, Bilis was about 190 kilometers southeast of Taiwan at 2pm yesterday and moving northwest at 15 kilometers per hour. The storm was expected to land in Fujian Province at midnight yesterday, said the bureau. --(7/14)
The city's consumer watchdog issued the first batch of Car Consumer Rights Protection Cards yesterday. Eighteen car-sales agencies joined the card union. Consumers can contact the Shanghai Commission of Consumers' Right and Interests Protection anytime if they feel their rights have been infringed as long as they have filled in consumer-rights cards, made available when purchasing a car from any of the 18 companies. --(7/13)
City to preserve historic sites in suburbs
Shanghai will renovate 32 suburban historic spots to exploit their potential as tourist attractions as part of its efforts to devote more resources to rural development, city officials said yesterday.
"We want to develop more areas outside the downtown into popular scenic sites," said Wang Anshi, head of the Shanghai Housing and Land Administrative Bureau's renovation and management department. Unlike some historical projects in the downtown, the effort in the countryside will be accomplished without major relocations of residents, Wang said.
The official said he hopes final planning for the project will be finished this year. While the full list of target sites was not released, Wang did reveal a few of the most important.
Among them: Xinchang Town in Nanhui District, Jinze and Zhujiajiao in Qingpu District, Fengjing in Jinshan District and Nanxiang in Jiading District.
Located about a 30-minute drive from central Shanghai, Xinchang dates back at least 1,000 years. It is one of the city's few ancient canal towns that haven't been affected by industrial development.
One of the town's prime charms is its old fishing village environment, in which many fishermen and their families still live. The town is also home to around 35 ancient bridges.
Jinze is an ancient place known for its nine intricate and well-preserved historic bridges, some of which were built as early as the Song Dynasty (916-1279).
Zhujiajiao is an old water town typical of those found south of the Yangtze River. It was a village market during the Three Kingdoms Period (220-280) and later became a bustling trading center.
Fengjing, which is located at the border of Shanghai and Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces, holds many ancient houses and the former residences of renowned figures.
Most of the residential buildings within the preservation areas will be kept, and some may be leased to artists as galleries and calligraphy studios, officials said.
Wang noted that some of the towns on the target list, including Zhujiajiao, are already scenic spots.
When they become designated historic areas they will receive equal protection to those in the downtown and benefit from greater funding. --(7/12)
New construction plan approved for Waigaoqiao area
The detailed construction plan to turn the Waigaoqiao area in Pudong District into an environmentally-friendly new town was approved yesterday, and will be put into operation by the end of this year.
In the planned 14.05-square-kilometer new town, enclosed by the Jinqiao Export Processing Zone and Waigaoqiao Free Trade Zone, there will be a multi-functional public center with administrative offices, business, entertainment and educational facilities available.
A 5.74-square-kilometer greenery space will also be developed by 2008, with the area equal to that of two Century Parks.
Two lakes will be constructed in the greenery space to link it to the Huangpu River and the Yangtze River.
The project, with a basic framework to be complete by 2010, will achieve its finished product by 2020. The construction of the town will improve the urbanization level of the suburbs and create more job opportunities for farmers. --(7/11)
More than 30 domestic and foreign experts in nanotechnology gathered in the city over the weekend to discuss the future use of nanotechnology. The symposium was the 76th Eastern Forum of Science and Technology ¡ª a regular scientific gathering hosted by the city government, the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Chinese Academy of Engineering. --(7/10)
Disney dancers warm up
The musical¡°The Lion King¡± practice at a rehearsal on Friday before its debut at the Shanghai Grand Theater on July 18. The Disney production will entertain local audiences through October 12. --(7/9)
Park building plan
Shanghai Jinqiao Export Processing Park in Pudong New Area will build a park to attract companies in the productive service industry, officials said yesterday.
The park, planned to be the city's largest of its kind, will cover 1.5 million square meters and the total construction area will reach 1.8 million square meters. According to the goal of the park, the number of companies in the productive service industry should increase to 300 from the current 103 by 2010. --(7/7)
Yuyuan to be extended
Three new commercial complexes will be built near Yuyuan Garden Shopping Center before 2010, based on a Huangpu District development plan.
The complexes are part of the vision to create a business and cultural destination for tourists by 2010.
The new buildings will be in harmony with the historic constructions of Yuyuan Garden, officials said.
"We will strictly control the height and style of new buildings surrounding Yuyuan Mart," an official surnamed Pan from Huangpu District government said yesterday.
He said Yuyuan's new development will be divided into three ring-shaped areas.
The inner ring, which covers an area of 5.3 hectares including Chenghuang Temple, will have Chinese restaurants and a retail center that sells cultural merchandise such as chopsticks and antiques.
The 43.7-hectare middle ring - surrounded by Renmin Road, Henan Road S. and Choujin Road - will be developed into a different shopping area with entertainment venues and more restaurants.
The 23-hectare outer ring will incorporate small stores and also be a transport hub.
Yutai Shopping Mall, Quecheng Shopping Mall, and Fumin commercial complex will be built in the middle ring.
Pan said the new buildings will resemble existing Yuyuan Mart shops.
This year, several Yuyuan shopping outlets - including Tianyulou and Huabaolou - will also undergo face-lifts.
The buildings are based on both Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) styles. --(7/6)
Metro may abolish train drivers
Shanghai plans to test a metro train that is operated without a driver for a future line, officials said yesterday. Officials will test equipment maintenance, communications and emergency response measures. "The automated technology will be beneficial as it can be applied to other means of transport in the future," said Yin Wei, an official of Shanghai Metro Operation Company. "It can also be used in other cities." But the tests are still a long way off. The company plans to select a future metro line to conduct the trials within the next five years. There are more than 100 metro trains running along five lines in Shanghai. There is one driver for each train. Each train has three to five back-up drivers. Subway operators are mostly there to open and close train doors, monitor the equipment and handle emergencies. Some transport experts said that the system will cause potential risks to passengers. They said the technology doesn't suit Shanghai's metro system because someone needs to pay attention to the safety of commuters. During rush hours, metro trains at downtown stations such as People's Square are so crowded that people push and shove to get on and off subway cars. Women, children and seniors have complained that they can't use the metro during rush hours due to the crowds. --(7/5)
Museums feature new exhibitions
The city is featuring two new public exhibits on science and nature this summer.
A night animal exhibition opened last night at Shanghai Insect and Pet Museum, Pudong New Area.
More than 100 night animals now reside in the museum, such as owls, lizards, frogs, bats, loris, Canadian minks and so on. And children can also play with fireflies.
The show room is dimly lit to generate a night scene for the animals, but still bright enough for visitors.
Nature night sound effects play in the background, including sounds of frogs and other insects.
The night animal hall opens daily from 6pm to 9:30pm.
Tickets are 35 yuan (US$4.37) for each adult, and 20 yuan for children under 1.2-meter tall.
Separately, the Shanghai Science and Technology Museum will host a series of science activities including a German science journey.
From August 3 to October 7, the exhibition, called Science Tunnel, will be staged by the museum, showing visitors the mysteries of our world.
This scientific exhibition was created by the Max Planck Society, Germany's Nobel laureate powerhouse.
In the Science Tunnel, visitors move through twelve stations, from the smallest elements of our world to the largest structures in the universe. Hundreds of large-format images, video clips and dozens of exhibits offer new perspectives into the very smallest and very largest objects of the universe.
Among the themes: the speed of light for cyclists; Mars landscapes and how the brain commands billions of cells to create sensation and music. --(7/4)
Escape the summer
With the summer sweat in full swing, people looking to escape the heat have two refreshing choices.
The City Beach in Fengxian District, opening on July 20, is the first public sand beach in Shanghai.
The 50,000-square meter beach is admission free and tourism officials say that the water, taken from the East China Sea has been filtered and is safe for swimming.
Life guards will also patrol the beach.
The beach has a 1.6-kilometer coast line and the resort area also includes golf courses, hotels and a parking lot.
Construction on the beach started last year.
But if a summer splash isn't enough to cool you down, two monthlong grape festivals starting on July 10 can help quench thirsts.
The festivals will be held at the Malu vineyard, Jiading District, and Shipu vineyard, Jinshan District.
The best time to visit is in mid-July, said Shan Chuanlun, director of the Jiading Malu Grapes Research Center, as the grapes will be fully grown at their juiciest. --(7/3)
Shanghai South Railway Station starts official operation
Shanghai South Railway Station started official operation yesterday. --(7/2)