Author: Tracy You
Posted on: Mail Online, March 28th, 2017
A mega-city is set to appear in China, which would be home to around one-tenth of the country’s population.
More than 100 million residents would be living within the ‘megatropolis’, which is larger than Britain, or some 137 times the size of London.
The authority plans to build an extensive network of high-speed railways and motorways to make sure that by 2020, residents of the humongous Jing-Jin-Ji urbanised region would spend less than an hour on their commutes.
Situated in the north-east part of China on the coast of Bohai Sea, the planned mega-city is set to consolidate some of China’s most populous urban areas.
It’s set to include Beijing and Tianjin, with 20 million and 13 million residents respectively, as well as Hebei, the province that surrounds them and has 74.2 million residents.
The massive urbanised region, known as Jing-Jin-Ji, would cover a whopping 83,403 square miles (216,020 square kilometres), about 3,000 square miles larger than Britain.
It’s also about 137 times the size of Greater London, which occupies 607 square miles (1,572 square kilometres).
Other major cities in Jing-Jin-Ji region include Shijiazhuang, the provincial capital of Hebei with around 10 million people, Chengde, the summer retreat of ancient emperors and Qinghuangdao, the eastern end of the Great Wall of China.
Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei are known as Jing, Jin and Ji in short.
Vast resources have been poured into the mega-city.
Last year, more than 340 billion yuan (£40 billion) was invested in Jing-Jin-Ji’s five pillar industries, namely education, health, transport, ecology and human resources, reported China’s Economic Information Daily.
By 2020, eight new intercity railways would be completed; and by 2050, a further 16 would appear on the map.
In November, the Chinese government approved some 250 billion yuan (£29 billion) for the region to build 700 miles (91,126 kilometres) of railways within three years, according to an article on NBC News.
The development of the Jing-Jin-Ji mega-city was first approved by China’s National Development and Reform Commission in 2014, which called for a ‘new capital economic zone’.
According to the vision, Beijing will remain as the Chinese capital and the political and financial centre. The city is set to cut down its manufacturing industry and focus on the energy-saving and environmental sectors.
Some of the manufacturers are due to be moved to harbour city Tianjin, which would also focus on its Free Trade Zone.
On the other hand, Hebei would expand its clean manufacturing and wholesale trading industries.
Although the government planned to develop the three regions on a collaborative effort, it’s understood that up until now authorities from Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei have been drafting their administrative plans separately.
However earlier this month, the China’s National Development and Reform Commission said they are due to break the administrative barriers between the three regions, reported Xinhua News Agency.
According to Minister He Lifeng, the Commission is preparing a plan to officially combine Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei.
It’s also thought that the plan could facilitate the 2022 Winter Olympics, which will be jointly held by Beijing and Zhangjiakou, both in the Jing-Jin-Ji mega-city.
Jing-Jin-Ji is not the only super urban region in China. In Pearl River Delta Region another mega-city measuring some 180,000 square kilometres (70,000 square miles) is forming.
With an estimated population of 64 million people, the southern China’s financial and manufacturing hub stretches from Guangzhou to Shenzhen, which borders Hong Kong.