Sunday, September 18, 2005

Science City Plans Approved

Beijing City Land Plans Approved
Zhongguancun “Science City” Demarcated
August 24, 2005 on
Source: Beijing Business Today (
Original website in Chinese:

Translated by Tyler Rooker on September 18, 2005 for

Sketch of “Science City” in Zhongguancun by Zhao Zhenchao

This reporter learned yesterday from the Beijing City Planning Committee that the specific plans for Zhongguancun Science City had been approved. The vice-president of the company responsible for first level developing of the Science City, Yang Jianping of Zhongguancun Science City Construction Limited Liability Company, said: the specific plans were put in place in order to increase benefits from development.

According to the City Planning Committee, the Zhongguancun Science City will run from Chengfu Road in the north to Zhichun Road in the south; from Zhongguancun Avenue (Baiyi Road) in the west to Finance & Economics Academy Road East in the east. This is a total of 331.43 hectares of total land use. The planned total construction is 4.42 million square meters, of which 2.65 million square meters will be set aside for construction by China Academy of Sciences. Insiders pointed out that this is possibly the largest scale land use in a city ever.
The Planning Committee also emphasized that it must combine demands for city landscape, environment, and land development so that multiple levels of construction involved in the Zhongguancun Science City are addressed. Also, it must clarify the plans for a green land system in the Zhongguancun Science City, plans for road and traffic systems, and plans for public facilities and government offices.

The Area is Equivalent to 1.5 Summer Palaces

(See here for an English tour of Beijing’s Summer Palace)

Zhongguancun Science City is located along the development axis of the Zhongguancun Science & Technology Zone. It has an area of over 330 hectares, equivalent to the area of 1.5 Summer Places. Together with Peking University, Tsinghua University and the Zhongguancun western high-tech commercial center, it forms the Zhongguancun Science & Technology Zone, Haidian Park central region. Zhongguancun There are over 25 national research institutes and over 50 national keystone laboratories and development laboratories. There are 16,000 science and technology workers of whom there are over 100 from the two Academies of Sciences. The Science City of Zhongguancun also has a large number of competitive high-tech enterprises. You could say that Zhongguancun Science City is the national treasure of high-tech talent in China.

Tardiness in Constructing the Science City

This reporter learned from related departments that as early as 6 years ago, China Academy of Sciences (CAS) had made plans to construct the largest science city in all of East Asia. In 1999, the city of Beijing and other science and technology departments decided to use a period of 10 years to build Zhongguancun Science City into a world-class science and technology zone.
In 2001, the city of Beijing government and CAS joined hands to plan the science city. In that year, on November 8, the Beijing Zhongguancun Science City Construction Limited Liability Company was formally established, which showed that the Zhongguancun Science City had entered the practical phase. And yet, over three years have passed and construction on the Science City remains in initial stages. Up until yesterday, formal permission to go ahead with the plans by the City Planning Committee had not been given.

The vice-president of the Beijing Zhongguancun Science City Construction Limited Liability Company, Yang Jianping analyzed the situation. He said that the tardiness of construction had three aspects. First, this area totals 331.43 hectares, equivalent to 1.5 Summer Palaces, and so there are difficulties in development. Second, the structure of Zone construction is complex ? the Science City encompasses 25 national research institutes and over 50 national keystone laboratories and development laboratories. These cannot be demolished so demolishment must be carried out carefully to avoid damage. Finally, there have been other problems with demolition that have not been solved.

The Rise of a High-Tech Economic Center

With the issuing of specific plans for the Science City, clear progress has been made in developing it. Specific plans have been integrated with overall city planning and specific district planning. Land use and use intensity in the specific districts has been clarified, while roads and engineering angles as well as environment protection have been integrated. These plans are the direct result of management by the City Planning Committee.

The Beijing Zhongguancun Science City Construction Limited Liability Company vice-president, Yang Jianping, explained it this way: the specific plans have been issues to demarcate the basic height, area, and roads to be encompasses. This is the backdrop to the next stage in planning.

The Beijing Zhongguancun Science City Construction Limited Liability Company has taken on the responsibility of constructing the Zhongguancun Science City High-Tech Industry Innovation Incubator. Starting with land development in 2001, today it has basically completed organization of this land. The Zhongguancun Science City High-Tech Industry Innovation Incubator will take up 33.6 hectares, with the basic function of transferring the scientific research capabilities of the Science City into industrial capabilities. It will become a well-know collaboration and information exchange center domestically and internationally. The Innovation Incubator will also be a high-tech and product training center. According to the plans, within 5-7 years, the Innovation Incubator will take advantage of a perfected infrastructure construction, advanced information networks, lively enterprises, beautiful environment, dense cultural atmosphere, and a modern feel -- a world-class science and technology zone.

President of China area for the Kotler Marketing Company (USA) Tiger Cao, real-estate investment consultant, said in an interview that: “This region has great development future. It will become concentrated area of high- and medium-level income groups. At the same time, because of Zhongguancun’s attractiveness, it will create a large movement of people. Over the next few years, this place will become like the CBD District -- an economic center with high-tech as its focus.

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