China is integrating multiple cities into megacity regions. China has deployed regional integration plans in 2019. They are accelerating integration of the YRD (Yangtze River Delta – Shanghai area) region, Greater Bay Area (Around Hong Kong and Guangdong), or Jing-Jin-Ji (Beijing-Tianjin) region, are seen as a solution to this problem.
To integrate the YRD region, on December 1, 2019, the State Council rolled out the Master Plan for Integrated Regional Development of Yangtze River Delta, aiming to achieve urban-rural integration within the region and integrated development of high-tech industries, infrastructure, the ecological environment, and public services by 2025. The integration project requires coordination among local governments, who are often engaged in a competitive relationship to showcase higher economic development. President Xi urged that local governments make efforts to break administrative barriers, enhance policy coordination, and enable the easier flow of production factors (smooth flow of land, labor, capital, technology, and data) within the YRD region.
They are integrating the identification systems. Each city in China has their own ID cards. There are now common ID cards for each region. They are fully integrating the tax and other government services.
They are building out the high speed rail, highways and other transportation services.
Under the 2019 plans, substantial progress will be made in boosting the integrated development of the delta region by 2025, including fostering a number of world-class industrial clusters and becoming a key national innovation hub. By 2035, the area would become the most influential and dynamic growth pole of the economy.
The delta region encompasses Shanghai and the provinces of Jiangsu, Zhejiang and Anhui, covering around 358,000 square kilometers and generating about one-quarter of the country’s GDP.
City defined from Roman times means an area that can be traversed in one hour. High speed rail, boring tunnels, boring loops, roads with all self driving cars would be able to connect areas 150-250 miles across in one hour.
Last December, the Master Plan for YRD integration proposed to build a “digital YRD region” with the coordinated generation of new information infrastructure. Shanghai’s digital economy now accounts for more than 50 percent of its GDP, while Zhejiang and Jiangsu provinces account for more than 40 percent. Shanghai is ramping up the construction of 5G network and data centers. On February 10, Shanghai released the Opinions on Further Accelerating the Construction of Smart Cities by 2022.
A new 163-km high speed railway track designed for a speed of 350 km per hour will open a new route connecting Shanghai with neighboring cities in Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces. It is the latest project to facilitate regional integration in the country. It is being built with an investment of 38 billion yuan (5.3 billion U.S. dollars). It will have seven stations and is expected to serve as a new transportation artery in the city cluster. Construction also began on another intercity railway linking Yangzhou City in Jiangsu Province with Ma’anshan in Anhui Province in the Yangtze River Delta region. Construction of 76 large infrastructure connectivity projects including railways, expressways, airports, waterways and ports has started so far this year in the region, with total outlay exceeding 1 trillion yuan.
More high-speed railways will establish an inter-city transport circle, connecting cities half an hour to three hours away. Railway development in the region has a planned investment of 87.03 billion yuan ($12.28 billion) to put more than 1,000 km of new railways into operation by the end of 2020.
SOURCES- Xinhua, Wikipedia, China Briefing
Written By Brian Wang, Nextbigfuture.com
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