A City’s Im­prove­ment

Beijing (English) - - EDITOR’S NOTE - ( Trans­lated by Cai Yihe, edited by Roberta Raine)

When asked about their im­pres­sion of Bei­jing, most Bei­jingers de­scribe it as a fash­ion cap­i­tal, an in­ter­na­tional me­trop­o­lis and a tech cap­i­tal. Re­cent news, how­ever, of­fers an­other choice. In June of this year, af­ter mu­nic­i­pal govern­ment agen­cies held a meet­ing on the de­mar­ca­tion of per­ma­nent farm­land, it was an­nounced that 101,066 hectares of per­ma­nent farm­land have been de­mar­cated in Bei­jing mu­nic­i­pal­ity. Apart from Dongcheng, Xicheng and Shi­jing­shan districts, 13 districts have been ap­proved by the mu­nic­i­pal­ity to be used for per­ma­nent farm­land.

Of the to­tal farm­land area, over 9,866 hectares are in the out­skirts of the city. Ad­di­tion­ally, about 2,652 state­ments to pro­tect the per­ma­nent farm­land have been signed, and 4,950 preser­va­tion signs and bill­boards have been placed on land. Some 5,460 ta­bles with in­for­ma­tion on the pro­tec­tion of per­ma­nent farm­land have been com­pleted, along with 2,652 preser­va­tion maps, fill­ing 171 vol­umes.

This work of draw­ing a bound­ary to pro­tect farm­land, to­gether with ex­ist­ing forests, rivers, lakes and moun­tains, forms a phys­i­cal bor­der for Bei­jing Mu­nic­i­pal­ity’s ur­ban de­vel­op­ment.

At the same time, the per­ma­nent farm­land, with mul­ti­ple eco­log­i­cal func­tions in green land and land­scap­ing, will be able to or­gan­i­cally in­te­grate with green­belts, ur­ban green spa­ces and nat­u­ral land­scapes. The com­bi­na­tion should be ef­fec­tive in al­le­vi­at­ing pol­lu­tion such as smog by build­ing up an eco­log­i­cal bar­rier for the cap­i­tal.

It has al­ways been the ob­jec­tive and vi­sion of Bei­jing to de­velop a world-class, har­mo­nious and live­able cap­i­tal. Data show that, with the eco­log­i­cal im­prove­ments in Bei­jing well un­der­way, Bei­jingers will find them­selves liv­ing in a pure eco­log­i­cal city with an idyl­lic life­style.

Bei­jingers have al­ways cared about the changes tak­ing place in the mu­nic­i­pal­ity. With so many mod­ern won­ders made avail­able to res­i­dents, this an­cient cap­i­tal con­tin­ues to im­press both lo­cals and vis­i­tors in di­verse ways. Re­cently, jour­nal­ists were given the chance to be the first to ex­pe­ri­ence a new mode of trans­porta­tion: Bei­jing’s first sight­see­ing tram: the Xi­jiao ( West­ern Sub­ur­ban) Line of the Bei­jing Sub­way.

The Xi­jiao Line will run through the city’s renowned “three hills and five gar­dens” west of the city: Fra­grant, Yuquan and Longevity hills, the Sum­mer Palace, and Jingyi, Jing­ming and Changchun gar­dens and Yuan­mingyuan Park (the Old Sum­mer Palace).

Ex­pected to be fully oper­a­tional at the end of this year, the Xi­jiao Line will also pass by the Kunyu River, the South- to- North Wa­ter Trans­fer Memo­rial Park, Beiwu Park, Wan’an Or­chard, Bei­jing Botan­i­cal Gar­den and other scenic spots. With large glass win­dows, the tram of­fers a beau­ti­ful view of scenery for pas­sen­gers. The tramway not only rep­re­sents in­no­va­tion in trans­porta­tion, but also em­bod­ies the mu­nic­i­pal­ity’s well- or­ches­trated plan­ning.

With nu­mer­ous his­tor­i­cal and cul­tural scenic spots along its route, the Xi­jiao Line has high stan­dards in re­gard to en­vi­ron­men­tal pro­tec­tion. Dur­ing the fea­si­bil­ity study, the mu­nic­i­pal­ity hired pro­fes­sional land­scape de­sign­ers to study the sur­round­ings, ur­ban plan­ning, and cul­tural relic preser­va­tion case by case so that the line could har­mo­niously co­ex­ist with its sur­round­ings. For peak sea­sons in tourism, the tram will be able to add on ex­tra com­part­ments to en­sure daily op­er­a­tion, an un­prece­dented move in the his­tory of Bei­jing’s trans­porta­tion.

The news of a city’s de­vel­op­ment and pros­per­ity al­ways ex­cites its res­i­dents. The mu­nic­i­pal­ity’s grand un­der­tak­ing has in­spired Bei­jingers to look for­ward to the promis­ing fu­ture while en­joy­ing their lives here and now. As the sea­son of lo­tus blos­soms grace the mu­nic­i­pal­ity, their fra­grance and beauty has lured many vis­i­tors to lake­sides to en­joy the sum­mer months.

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