China plans to build new city nearly three times the size of New York – by Tom Phillips (The Guardian – April 4, 2017)

https://www.theguardian.com/

Announcement of the Xiongan New Area leads to a frenzy of property speculation with investors clogging roads to get to site

Beijing – A hitherto anonymous region near China’s smog-choked capital has been overrun by house buyers after Beijing unveiled “historic” plans to build a new city there in a bid to slash pollution and congestion.

Plans for the Xiongan New Area, a special economic zone that authorities say will eventually cover an area nearly three times that of New York, were announced by the Communist party’s top leaders on Saturday with a flurry of government propaganda.

In a joint statement two of China’s most powerful political bodies, the central committee and state council, described the new city, which will straddle three counties about 100km southwest of Beijing, as “a strategy crucial for a millennium to come”.

“[This is a] major historic and strategic choice made by the Chinese Communist party’s central committee with comrade Xi Jinping as the core,” the joint notice added using the latest political title to be bestowed upon China’s paramount leader.

Official news agency Xinhua said Xiongan’s creation would reduce pressure on China’s car-clogged, 22 million-resident capital, and “usher in a new chapter in the country’s historic transitioning to coordinated, inclusive and sustainable growth”.

“Xiongan will be an answer to China’s growth conundrum: breakneck urban sprawl must give way to a balanced and inclusive development strategy,” Xinhua added in a breathless commentary trumpeting the mega-project.

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