Massive road work in Chinese cities to help reduce heavy congestion

World Today

Taiyuan, the capital of north China’s Shanxi Province, has to deal with heavy traffic congestion, a problem it shares with China’s many other cities.

Though the city has undertaken large-scale projects for more roadways to ease bottlenecks, residents will have to endure inconveniences from the construction. CCTV-America reporter Hu Chao looks at some of the city’s growing pains.

Chinese city Taiyuan undergoes massive road works

Chinese city Taiyuan undergoes massive road works

Taiyuan, the capital of north China's Shanxi Province, has to deal with heavy traffic congestion, a problem it shares with China's many other cities. Though the city has undertaken large-scale projects for more roadways to ease bottlenecks, residents will have to endure inconveniences from the construction. CCTV-America reporter Hu Chao looks at some of the city's growing pains.

There are nearly a million motor vehicles in Taiyuan, a city of four million people, according to local Statistics Bureau. Roads suffering from chronic congestion are choked further into standstill during peak hours. Taiyuan’s typical problem is the serious rush hour traffic jams. Much of the roads run longitudinally from north to south so one traffic at one spot could affect the entire stretch.

Compounding traffic woes are large-scale road construction works which began last year-disrupting road conditions along major intersectional streets, where much of the city’s traffic converges. Residents see these inconveniences as temporary. Authorities see potential, pumping in tens of billions of Renminbi to road construction projects. More than a hundred roads and flyovers stretching a total of 180 kilometers (roughly 112 miles) have either been newly paved or upgraded-accommodating the growing vehicle numbers that would otherwise eventually overwhelm the city.

To add to improvements, authorities are also rebuilding pipelines as part of maintenance works. Like many other cities in China, Taiyuan is accelerating efforts for road upgrades and construction. Experts told local officials and residents that quality and safety of the projects were more important than quantity or speed of completion.