Leveraging the opportunity to host the 3rd Asian Youth Games, the highest-level sports event that Shantou will host in its history, the city is pushing forward the preparatory work for the Games as well as the building of a modernized city, turning the hosting of the Games into an opportunity to boost city development.
Based on the needs of the 18 categories of events, the construction of venues is progressing smoothly and in an orderly manner. Currently, construction and renovation projects are in full swing.
The topping out of the two major structures of the Asian Youth Games main venue project has been completed, and the construction and renovation of the other 22 venue projects are rapidly progressing.
A total of 139 projects to upgrade the urban environment have been given priority, which include the greening of footpaths and the transformation of bus stops and bus lines. Up to now, 1.7 million square meters of illegal buildings have been demolished, 18,000 illegally set up outdoor advertising boards have been torn down, and 352 kilometers of roads have been constructed or renovated.
Shantou is also strengthening its function as a national comprehensive transportation hub by facilitating the construction of roads, ports, aviation and logistics facilities. Bullet trains linking Shantou and Hong Kong have been put into service. The construction of the Shantou-Shanwei High-speed Railway and the Zhangzhou-Shanwei High-speed Railway is speeding up. The city has planned and is building the central commercial area of the Shantou Railway Station according to high standards. The Shantou-Zhanjiang and Chaoshan Loop expressways will be completed and put into service this year.
On the morning of May 16, the East Line of Shantou Bay Tunnel, known as the “World-class Super Project,” has been successfully completed. The two 100,000-ton container berths, the seawall and the 100,000-ton channel of the second phase of the Guang’ao Bay project have been completed and put into trial service. The final adjustments of the planning and construction schemes for the third phase of the project have been completed. Its container throughput from January to May reached 510,000 TEUs, representing a 2.9-percent increase year on year.
Starting from this year, the city will invest 300 million yuan to support the opening of new international and domestic air routes and increase the frequency of original routes within three years. The courier business saw a year-on-year increase of 74.6 percent from January to May, ranking fifth in the province and 12th in the country.
Shantou is striving to build four regional focal points including education, health care, culture and commerce. Part of this effort is seen in the investment of 14.6 billion yuan in five projects currently under construction: the east campus of Shantou University, the south campus of Guangdong Technion Israel Institute of Technology, Shantou Junior College for Kindergarten Teachers, the expansion project of Shantou Polytechnic, and Shantou Sports School.
Shantou has invested 2 billion yuan to improve its medical services. The First Affiliated Hospital of Shantou University Medical College and Shantou Central Hospital have been recognized as high-level hospitals in the province.
The city has launched the second phase of the conservation and revitalization project of the Port Opening Area of Xiaogongyuan Park, accelerated the renovation of 90,000 square meters of Qilou buildings, and built various theme museums including the Shantou Urban Development Exhibition Hall.
Shantou has accelerated the development of high-end commercial service industries, including car sales, catering, wholesale and retail, and the construction and operation of a group of urban complexes. It strives to develop characteristic economy styles such as night, tourist, and courtyard economies.
At the same time, the city is resolved to control and fight pollution. It has invested 25.9 billion yuan to treat the pollution of Liangjiang River.