137 Shanghai projects receive national funding
The National Planning Office of Philosophy and Social Sciences has said 137 Shanghai projects have been approved this year and will be funded by the China National Social Science Foundation.
Of those, 85 are classified as normal and 52 are youth projects, 16 more than last year.
The foundation supports projects that aim to advance innovation in theories and academic areas and encourage new subject systems, academic thought and scientific research methods.
These projects delegate the highest level of philosophy and social sciences in our nation. --(6/30)
Disneyland in Pudong a 'done deal'
Years of negotiations between the Shanghai government and Walt Disney Co appear to have clinched a deal for a huge Disneyland to be built in Pudong.
The official announcement is expected to be made after the Beijing Olympics in August.
An exclusive report published by the Hong Kong-based Wen Wei Po newspaper yesterday said the park will cover about 10 square kilometers of land - about eight times the size of Hong Kong Disneyland.
It will be near Pudong's Chuansha Town, about 20 minutes' drive from Pudong International Airport.
Earlier media reports had said the Shanghai government preferred it to be built on the city's island county Chongming.
Yesterday's report quoted unnamed people involved in the discussion, saying Shanghai Disneyland won't follow the Hong Kong model, in which the Hong Kong government leased the land to Disney.
The Shanghai government will provide the land, finance construction, and own the majority stake in the park, the report said.
Management rights will be given to Disney, which will also get royalties and a percentage of operational income.
The report said the park will open "at the earliest possible time" in 2012, when about one-third of the park will be completed.
"Considering inflation, the budget to build the park, excluding the land cost, should rise to about 40 billion yuan (US$5.7 billion), from the earlier estimate of 30 billion yuan," an unnamed "expert involved in the appraisal of the project" was quoted as saying.
In March, Shanghai Mayor Han Zheng said the local government had applied to the central government to build a Disneyland.
It would be the third Disneyland in Asia after Japan and Hong Kong.
Walt Disney Co signed a statement of intent to build a Disneyland on the Chinese mainland in 2002, and then set up a venture to develop it.
The plan was put on hold because of concerns that the Hong Kong park, opened in 2005, would suffer. --(6/29)
Airport to be key to transport hub
Hongqiao Airport's new West Terminal will be completed by September next year, as a part a project to set up a multi-function transport hub in the area, according to the project constructor.
The multi-function transport project has started with the construction of an express train station. When completed by 2010, the transport hub will offer transfers between inter-city and express trains, the Metro, long-distance buses and urban bus services.
That will enable travelers to take a train from Beijing directly to Hongqiao Airport, which will be within an hour's Metro ride from Shanghai's business areas such as Xujiahui, People's Square and Lujiazui in Pudong.
The hub will be a highly efficient multi-transport network, said the project supervisors.
Hongqiao's new transport hub is expected to become a new urban center and cater to nearly 650,000 passengers a day, with maximum turnover of 1.1 million people. --(6/28)
Storms set to strike as city braces for big wet
Storms will strike the city again tonight with rain likely to continue across the weekend, weather forecasters said yesterday.
Affected by the low pressure system formed by tropical cyclone Fengshen, rain will fall most of the day, peaking with storms late today, the Shanghai Meteorological Bureau said.
Temperatures will range from 23 to 27 degrees Celsius today. The maximum temperature will rise to 30 degrees at the weekend. Lows will be still be around 23 degrees, the forecasters said.
Next week a subtropical high is expected to strengthen, with weather experts monitoring when the plum rain season will come to an end.
"Usually the plum rain season ends when the subtropical high is strong enough to move the plum rain belt," said Man Liping, a forecaster with the bureau. "That's why after the season it will be dry and hot for a period ?? because the subtropical high overwhelms the weather system."
"But at present we can still see a rain spell or thunderstorm at the beginning of next week," she said.
The rainfall of the plum rain season has reached 264.4 millimeters since. --(6/27)
Time for a cool change on Metro
The 300,000 Metro commuters who use the People's Square Metro Station can enjoy some cooling moments now as the Metro authority has installed new air conditioning.
The Shanghai Metro Operation said it had put two new powerful air conditioning machines to work in the grand transfer hall at the station.
The station is shared by lines 1, 2 and 8 and has a daily passenger flow of more than 300,000 people.
The two cooling machines weigh 8 tons and are part of a major upgrade to the air-conditioning in the transfer hall, said the Metro operators.
Cooling systems on Line 1 are also being upgraded in response to passenger complaints, officials with the Metro authority said.
Some of the upgraded trains will be ready by September. --(6/26)
Quake award for paper
Oriental Morning Post, a sister Chinese newspaper to Shanghai Daily and part of the Wenhui Xinmin United Press Group, was honored by the Shanghai Trade Union for its coverage of the Sichuan earthquake.
OMP was the only award winner of local media, with more than 350 earthquake-related pages and 1,300 pictures published. --(6/25)
Beastly fun for the holidays
The two zoos in the city will both hold camps in the coming summer holidays.
The Shanghai Wildlife Park will host a summer camp to demonstrate the abnormal behavior of animals before an earthquake, while the Shanghai Zoo will promote frog and insect protection in its camp, officials said.
From July 1 to August 31 the SWP will show the reactions of more than 20 different animals before earthquakes, including pandas, elephants, chimpanzees and flamingos.
"We hope children can learn both about earthquakes and animals through the camp," said Su Feilong, an official with the park.
Children will also be able to make donations to panda's food in Sichuan Province - the bamboo forest in Wolong was seriously damaged in the earthquake, officials said.
At the Shanghai Zoo, three different camps will be held in July and children will be taught about frogs and insects, how a suitable environment can be made for frogs and how to find insects. --(6/24)
Wall Street English helps Expo to communicate
Wall Street English has donated a package of English-language training courses to help senior Expo organizers communicate better for the 2010 event.
The materials worth 2.5 million yuan (US$361,000) will be used primarily by high-ranking leaders of the Shanghai Bureau of World Expo Coordination, said Luigi Peccenini, founder of the Wall Street Institute.
In 2002, Wall Street English donated materials worth 8 million yuan to Shanghai government to support the city's World Expo bid. More than 240 government officials have received training so far; the project runs through the Expo.
The Wall Street Institute for English training was established in 1972; it has 400 centers in 26 countries and regions. --(6/23)
Seeds of joy found in lotus display
A Chinese antique lotus, which was bred from a seed buried for 1,000 years, features in a lotus exhibition that opened yesterday at Guyi Garden in Jiading District.
Continuing for two months, the exhibition includes more than 250 breeds of lotus, including miniature breeds that can grow in bowls.
Some newly cultivated strains such as the Taikong lotus and the Qianban lotus are also available at the exhibition, officials said.
Different breeds of lotus grow in different places, in bowls, pots, vats and pools, so the exhibition almost covers the whole garden.
And because they bloom nearly all summer, the exhibition will provide color and interest for visitors for two months, officials said. --(6/22)
Olympic arrivals begin smoothly
Shanghai welcomed the first goods arrivals destined for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games yesterday.
The goods, 24.3 ton of headless trout from Norway, passed inspection smoothly, said the Shanghai Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau. The trout will be transported to Kunshan for processing, officials said. --(6/21)
The first tour group to Taiwan will be charged 12,880 yuan (US$1,873) for each tourist, local travel agencies said.
The group will enjoy a 10-day trip around the island, according to Shanghai CYTS Tours. --(6/20)
Nanjing Rd shops set standards
Nanjing Road is going to implement strict new standards for service in shops as well as restaurants and hotels over the next three years.
The Shanghai Bureau of Quality and Technical Supervision will trial new service regulations along the road, setting standards for the quality of service and the environment in shops, restaurants and hotels, officials said.
The bureau's Jing'an District branch said at present restaurants and hotels were much better than shops along the road.
"Restaurants and hotels have their own industrial standards but markets and department shops don't," said Cao Yue, an official with the bureau. "For example, signs in markets are often confusing and cause inconvenience."
Ten companies with shops on the road, including the Tomorrow Square, Shanghai Fashion Co Ltd and Shanghai JC Mandarin, signed an agreement yesterday, promising to abide by the new regulations. They will try to help set the standards or implement their own standards which will be higher than the proposed regulations.
Jing'an and Huangpu districts, where the road is located, will also develop the "time-honored" brands and shops along the road, officials said yesterday.
The two districts will give prizes to "time-honored" companies of between 50,000 yuan (US$7,412) and 1 million yuan every year, officials said. --(6/19)
Waiting for the ink to dry
The ink wash works by Mu Jiashan at Shanghai Art Museum, the starting point for the local leg of the artist's world tour for his traditional Chinese paintings. The exhibition is sponsored by World Bank. Mu is the first Chinese painter to be awarded the sponsorship. --(6/18)
On the record
A total of 102 hospitals in the city have started to record the daily number of patients undergoing outpatient and emergency treatment from last Sunday to September 15.
The policy will continue if the temperature is over 35 degrees Celsius after that date. The authority said it will introduce measures like extending outpatient services, launching night services and training extra medical personnel. --(6/17)
Playing in the shadows
Folk artists play piyingxi yesterday in a newly opened art house in Qibao Town that features this traditional Chinese art of leather-shadow puppets. Piyingxi has been listed by Shanghai as one its first city-level intangible cultural heritage items. --(6/16)
The Wall Street Institute School of English has donated a package of training courses to the Bureau of Shanghai World Expo Coordination to improve organizers' English ability.
The Internet-based course and learning materials were worth 2.5 million yuan(US$361,900). --(6/13)
Students on auto
Donghua University and Schneider Electric have set up an automated lab at the university's Songjiang campus.
The lab has 10 independent small industrial systems and equipment valued at 2 million yuan (US$285,714) so students can experience an electric manufacturing workshop. --(6/12)
About 20 percent of safety helmets have failed quality inspections.
The Shanghai Bureau of Quality and Technical Supervision found 17 helmet types, including the Guyun safety helmet and Sudian Zhixing helmet, had problems. --(6/11)
Jinshan City Beach has begun charging 30 yuan (US$4.30) to 50 yuan admission, the Jinshan District Coastline Development Administrative Committee said.
The beach is open from 8:30am to 8pm on Sunday to Thursday and from 8:30am to 9pm on Friday and Saturday. The ticket includes insurance.
Admission during the day is 30 yuan per person. Those who enter the site after 5:30pm or visit the beach on weekends and holidays will be charged 50 yuan. Students get in at half price. Those 60 or older, disabled people and children shorter than 1.2 meters tall can enter the beach for free. --(6/11)
Career guidance test launched
The city¡¯s labor and social security department has launched the country¡¯s first online assessment system for career guidance.
Those who have already started a career or intend to start a career can answer a series of questions and receive a detailed analysis of their abilities, what careers they are suitable for and free one-to-one counseling.
About 5,565 people have participated in the pilot operation. People from aged 16 to 35 accounted for 36.9 percent of all participants.
Residents can visit their district¡¯s business start-up center to take the test and be evaluated. --(6/10)
Station slated for Zhujiajiao
A new sightseeing bus center is expected to be built in Zhujiajiao Water Town in Qingpu District before the 2010 World Expo.
The center, near the A9 highway, will occupy more than 123,000 square meters. It will run buses to surrounding cities within two hours' drive of Shanghai, such as Shaoxing, Ningbo and Wuxi. Buses will also run to downtown Shanghai, said Zhujiajiao Tourism Development Co Ltd.
The center will also connect scenic spots in Qingpu including the Oriental Land park and those in surrounding districts, such as Sheshan Hill National Holiday Area in Songjiang District.
A parking lot will hold 3,200 cars, 40 times larger than parking at the Shanghai Sightseeing Bus Center beside Shanghai Stadium.
The bus center said it has several branches in the city, such as in Yangpu and Hongkou districts, but an official said it was too early to say whether it will operate the bus center in Zhujiajiao. --(6/9)
J-popsters head for Grand Stage
The Morning Musume, an all-girl J-pop group, will arrive in Shanghai on June 28 at the Shanghai Grand Stage.
At present the group has nine members, including two Chinese students studying in Japan, Qian Lin and Li Chun.
Li Chun participated in 2006 in the Super Girl contest, the Chinese version of "American Idol."
She said one of her former classmates has been missing since the earthquake hit Sichuan Province and she was worried.
The group has encouraged their audience to donate for earthquake survivors at two of their live shows in Tokyo, collecting more than 109 million Japanese yen (US$10,330).
The donation has been transferred to the quake-hit areas through the Shanghai Charity Foundation.
Qian and Li were the first foreign members. From 1997, the group has recruited eight through special contests.
And when members "graduated" for different reasons, new members will join. Up to now, altogether 25 girls have joined the group.
Qian and Li said fans in Japan seemed not easy to accept foreign members in the group at first.
"It's impossible for us to ignore those unhappy things, but we tell each other to be stronger, working hard to win fans' approval." --(6/8)
Tickets on sale
Ticket sales for the 11th Shanghai International Film Festival start today, with prices ranging from 30 yuan (US$4.20) to 60 yuan.
During the festival, about 300 films, including Oscar winners "No Country for Old Men" and "There Will Be Blood" will be screened at 23 local theaters such as Shanghai Film Art Center, Paradise Warner Cinema City and Stellar Cinema City. --(6/7)
Week highlights need to save energy
The annual energy conservation promotion week starts on June 15, with this year's theme aimed at urging everybody to act, the Shanghai Economic Commission said yesterday.
Government officials will chat with residents about energy-saving topics and volunteers will monitor how good Shanghai is at reducing energy consumption. Gao Yun, deputy director of the commission, said residents would be a major force in the energy conservation battle.
Prior to the promotion week, the 3rd Shanghai International Energy-saving & Environmental Protection Exhibition will be held at the Shanghai Exhibition Center from June 7 to 9. --(6/6)
Pudong New Area to feature 23 hubs
Shanghai plans to build 23 public transport transfer hubs in Pudong by 2010, city officials said yesterday.
The hubs - three of which have been built - aim to make it easier for commuters to transfer from the subway to buses and taxis.
"The new transfer hubs will save a lot of time for local commuters," Shanghai Transport Planning Institute's senior engineer Cai Yifeng said yesterday.
City planners of Pudong New Areas said they had put into use the Jinqiao Road Hub and Gangcheng Road Hub. The construction of the Jufeng Road Hub has been completed and will be in use by the end of the month.
The three hubs are connected to stations on Metro Line 6, a south-north artery subway line in Pudong. Another four hubs ?? at Wuzhou Avenue, Century Avenue, Shangnan Road and Jiyang Road - are also being constructed.
The Gangcheng Road Hub - at 23,000 square meters - is the biggest of the seven.
It is close to the Gangcheng Station of Metro Line 6 and also incorporates a long-distance bus station, a parking lot for vehicles and cyclists and a shopping mall.
It is home to 11 bus stations and special ground passages towards the Metro station.
The newly built Jufeng Road Hub is likely to accommodate several bus terminal stations including No.455, 797 and 170, according to Dai Xing, a transport official of Pudong New Area. --(6/5)
Shanghai Normal University opened an international piano masterclass yesterday, inviting four renowned foreign pianists including Fernando Laires to perform and instruct domestic piano students.
More than 2,000 students have signed up for the three-day event which is being held at the SNU's Xuhui campus. --(6/4)
The city will have a relatively cool week, with the maximum temperature remaining below 30 degrees Celsius, weathermen said yesterday.
Thunder storms are expected to hit the city late today. And rain will hit again on late Saturday, said the Shanghai Meteorological Bureau.
The low temperature will range between 20 and 21 degrees, forecasters said. --(6/3)
Some Metro lines have begun extending hours of operation and offering more streamlined services with transit bus lines.
The north-bound shuttles on Line 1 at Xinzhuang Station is in service until 10:35pm and Line 4's Outer Circle will be open until 10:15pm at Yishan Road Station.
Line 5, at Xinzhuang Station, now operates until 10:30pm and Line 6 runs from 6am to 9pm. Line 9 at Guilin Road Station is open until 9:15pm. --(6/2)
Changing lines gets cheaper on the Metro
Commuters will spend up to 3 yuan (43 US cents) less while transferring between some Metro lines from tomorrow with the introduction of a new pricing system at three Metro stations where different lines connect but their entrances are separate.
The change will be welcomed by commuters transferring between lines at the Metro hubs at Shanghai Railway Station, Hongkou Stadium Station and Yishan Road Station.
As the entrance areas for different lines are located some distance from each other at these stations, commuters have to make a second entry to take another line.
Commuters had long claimed the practice unfair and caused them to pay higher fares than they should.
"For example, a trip from Metro Line 1's Hanzhong Road Station to Line 3's Baoshan Road Station with a transfer via the Shanghai Railway Station will only cost a passenger 3 yuan," said Huang Qiongnuo, a spokeswoman for Shanghai Metro Operation Co.
"Under the current system, such a trip was considered two rides that cost 6 yuan in total."
Passengers must complete their transfer within 30 minutes at these three hubs. Otherwise, the system will count the second entry as a new ride.
But the new system will only benefit the public transport card holders.
Under the new policy, 1,253 combinations of trips between stations will be 1 yuan cheaper, 309 combinations will cost 2 yuan less, and fares for three another will drop 3 yuan, according to the operators. --(6/1)