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Beijing to spend hugely on improving infrastructure for Olympics
Last Updated(Beijing Time):2006-10-09 14:51

China's capital will invest an estimated 470 billion yuan (59.5 billion U.S. dollars) in infrastructure in the 2006-2010 period.

The money will be spent on 2,400 construction and upgrading projects, according to a masterplan unveiled on Sunday by the city's development and reform commission.

Projects to ease city traffic, improve energy and water supply and better the city environment will be completed before 2008 when Beijing hosts the Olympics, said Chai Xiaozhong, deputy head of the commission.

By 2008, Beijing will have a hyper-modern international air service hub. Upgrading of the current international airport will be completed and work will have begun on the city's second international airport. The Capital Airport hub will be able to process 60 million passengers a year, according to the plan.

In the next five years, Beijing will upgrade subway lines 1 and 2, and build lines 5 and 10, as well as a special subway leading to the Olympic village and gymnasiums. A light-rail track will also be laid to the airport. Intervals between subway train services will be shortened to 150 seconds. The total length of the city's subway and light rail network will reach 270 kilometers, and high-grade highways in the city center will stretch 280 kilometers. It will take 50 minutes at most to commute to areas within the city's fifth ring road.

Beijing will also expand parking lots to ensure a parking place for each motor vehicle in the five-year period.

Official statistics show that Beijing now has approximately 2.8 million motor vehicles but only 1.4-1.5 million parking places.

By 2008, the Taiyanggong gas-firing thermal power plant will have been built and heating pipes laid for the Olympic gymnasiums and surrounding areas. Electricity transmission projects for the areas will be completed, and construction will be revved up on the Beijing section of the south-to-north water diversion program. At the end of 2007, the section will be ready for water supply.

Beijing will clean up its rivers and lakes and improve water quality. Two water recycling plants will also be built. In 2010, annual consumption of natural gas in the capital will reach seven billion cubic meters.

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