Chinese cities lifts civilization construction, ushers in better life for people

By Zhang He, People’s Daily

Chinese cities lifts civilization construction, ushers in better life for people
A boat sails around Kulangsu, a well-known tourism destination in Xiamen, southeast China’s Fujian province, Oct. 8. (People’s Daily Online/Zhou Daoxian)

Nanchang-Shenzhen Agricultural Product Wholesale Market is the largest trading center for farm produce in Nanchang, east China’s Jiangxi province. Every day there are fruits and vegetables from across the country gathering at the market and then being distributed to other parts of Jiangxi and surrounding provinces.

However, after more than 10 years of operation, the market was troubled by poor sanitation, as well as jammed traffic due to aging facilities and improper management.

Thanks to a facelift project carried out this year, the market has taken on a new look. Now, it has flat roads, brand new walls with colorful paintings, as well clean shops.

“I had a pair of rubber boots on my car and I always put it on once I arrived at the market. When it was sunny, the ground of the market was filthy, and when it rained, there would be puddles,” said a dealer at the market. According to him, now the market is tiled, and channels have been dug to improve the drainage. “My boots are useless, even when it rains heavily,” he told People’s Daily.

Besides, the market also improved its parking facility, and the dealers finally bid a farewell to the days when they had to lose orders because big trucks were not able to enter the market. “My revenue more than doubled thanks to the smooth traffic at the market,” said dealer Hong Xiangyan.

Traffic is an indicator for a city’s civilization. Many cities in China has largely improved their traffic conditions when striving to improve their level of civilization, the result of which is very satisfactory for many citizens.

“Hangzhou is a city where drivers give way to pedestrians.” That’s an impression left to many visitors by the city in east China’s Zhejiang province. They found that all vehicles, including buses, taxis, and private cars, would wait before crosswalks and let pedestrians go first.

The city was recently hailed for its innovative practice of establishing free “filial” parking spots that encourage weekend parent visits. Inefficient parking space is a headache that has long troubled the city, and even a barrier for young people to visit their parents, as finding parking spots in residential areas was always extremely difficult. Hangzhou established 2,145 such parking spots in over 400 residential complexes last year, and those who come to visit their parents at weekends can enjoy free parking for hours.

Only when all citizens make joint efforts, can cities improve their civilization. Xiamen of southeast China’s Fujian province launched a public platform to monitor the city’s sanitation, traffic and public facilities, to which citizens can send pictures of the problems they spotted in these fields. Since August this year, over 1,900 cases were reported to the platform and then solved, and the life quality of people in the city has been substantially improved.

Jinan, capital of east China’s Shandong province also launched similar platforms, as well as a civil service hotline. On an online monitoring platform opened on social media application WeChat, 24-hour monitoring is carried out to spot problems quickly and immediately solve them.

As China quickens its steps to improve cities’ civilization, it is ushering in a better life for its citizens.