Cashing in on G20 anniversary for better future

As the city celebrates the first anniversary of the G20, it is also looking to its bright new future.

September 4 was the first anniversary of the G20 Summit in Hangzhou, when the leaders of the world's most powerful economies gathered in the showcase city near Shanghai.

The summit gave Hangzhou a great opportunity to showcase its enchanting landscape and culture.

The Hangzhou Tourism Commission has planned a variety of events based on the anniversary to develop the MICE industry — meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions.

The commission is cooperating with social media platform Weibo and has launched a series of activities named “Fresh Memory” on the popular website.

Previous photography and costume design contests have made a stir in cyberspace — attracting more than 130 million hits.

The commission has invited 20 specialists from 20  industries to trace the sites the foreign leaders and first ladies visited during the summit.

It designed four routes centered on themes of culture, metropolis, enterprises and innovative towns. This is  aimed at creating more tourist routes for visitors and making full use of new media to expand the market.

The 20 celebrities included Monk Yancan, swimmer Wu Peng and noted poet Huang Yazhou. They shared their experiences on social media, and the online exposure is  expected to reach 40 million people.

“Hangzhou attracted more than 74.24 million tourists during the first half of this year, up 14.45 percent year on year,” said Ye Hong from the Hangzhou Tourism Commission. “G20 Summit is the new calling card of the city. We hope to explore big dividends from it.”

Shanghai Daily walked along the routes and picked three places to showcase the city’s infusion of modern and traditional features.

China Academy of Art

China Academy of Art 中国美院

Designed by Pritzker Architecture Prize winner Wang Shu, most of the structures are less than five stories with many different sized windows. Used tiles and bricks are piled into rule-defying structures, old architectural methods are used to build large buildings, and the traditional spirit coexists with modernism.

The campus covers more than 500,000 square meters and is surrounded by streams and tree-covered hills. The buildings are designed so that the curves match the line of the hills in the distance, forming a harmonious bond.

However, they seem odd at first glance: Rough facades are built of misaligned recycled bricks and tiles, windows are not of a regular size and pop up randomly on the wall, and the gates are irregularly shaped.

Qianjiang New Town

Qianjiang New Town 钱江新城

Qianjiang New Town is to Hangzhou as Pudong New Area is to Shanghai. It is famous for its spectacular tidal bores and some snazzy buildings.

Hangzhou’s development has shifted from West Lake to the Qiantang River. 

The heart of the town is the “sun-moon” structure formed by the International Conference Center’s 18-story golden ball and the crescent-shaped Hangzhou Grand Theater.

A light show from 6:30 every night on buildings along the Qiantang River attracts swarms of people and beautifies the area. People take a walk along the waterfront promenade to get a view of the light show.

Now, the town is a hangout for hipsters and young people as numerous boutique stores and fashion brands can be found here. And the area is attracting more and more investors.


Yunqi Town

Yunqi Town 云栖小镇

To the west of the city, the new Yunqi Town is hailed as Hangzhou’s “Silicon Valley.” It is home to hundreds of Internet-related companies in sectors such as app development, electronic games and cloud computing.

In Xihu District, the majority of companies involve smart technologies. Some provide smart technology to build Hangzhou into a better city. For example, a big data project called City Brain could tackle traffic gridlock.

The system could collect data from every lane and street, and then the “brain” can work out the best traffic signal durations for intersections along the road. It can rearrange lanes and even prohibit left or right turns, depending on traffic.

The town now symbolizes Hangzhou’s hi-tech industry and even predicts the technological trends for the future. Visitors can experience the newest technology and get closer to talented brains there.

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