You may have heard a lot about Guangzhou’s Nansha district — about its bustling port and free trade zone, about its business-friendly environment and favorable economic policies. But you might not know about the amazing little things it has designed for life in the district, for making Nansha a people-oriented locale as well as an economic and shipping hub.
Nansha’s common touch can be seen along a 6.58-kilometer “model road” built in only a few months.
Rainbow-style zebra crossing
With an orange LED signal light broadcasting vocal reminders, drivers can know well to slow down and make way, while pedestrians, including smartphone addicts, can be reminded of when to cross and when to halt before crossing the road along the colorful zebra crossing.
A breathing green wall
A breathing wall, about 150 meters long and 3 meters high, can be found on one side of the road separating traffic from a residential area nearby. Sporting 22,400 plants dotted with over 10 kinds of flowers, the wall reduces dust and noise and makes the road more pleasant to the eyes.
More than a bus stop
A few bus stops along the road provide public Wi-Fi and self-help USB phone-charging services. Charging posts have also been established for electric cars. The sun shields of the bus stops are actually roofs to store solar energy.
Charging posts for electric cars
A multifunctional lamp can be spotted near the Wanda Plaza in Nansha district, with its lamppost attached with a loudspeaker, a security camera and a display screen. From the screen, one can gather information like the temperature, air humidity and direction of the wind. The lamppost has an environmental monitoring device on top and power generation devices stretching out on both sides. The lamp also provides public Wi-Fi, public alarms and phone-charging services.
In line with the city’s efforts to build an urban slow transportation system, Nansha district has made it a pleasant experience for citizens to walk or ride bicycles along beautiful lanes. Bicycle lanes are outlined and decorated on one side with statues, stylish seats, and even water dispensers. The bottoms of bridges are beautified with murals. Pleasant views slow people down, reduce anxiety and make the city more livable.
Besides the “model road”, Nansha district has also provided citizens with bus tracking services to make travelling easier.
Real-time bus tracking services
When will the bus come? Will you be able to catch the bus and get to work on time? No more worries! Nansha district has launched 55 smart bus stops along 69 lines, where commuters can read from the digital screen how many stops away the bus is and how crowded it is on the bus. Citizens can also turn on their Bluetooth and shake their phones to get synchronized information from the digital board via WeChat. They may also learn about the driver of the bus and grade the services. Smartphone apps for such services will also be launched soon to help citizens customize their bus trips and avoid wasting time on the road. (By Sophia Tang, Louis Berney)
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