Pudong developing reading culture with themed venues

Reading venues are getting distinctive features and top scholars and artists are being roped in to help the concept reach far and wide.
Huang Riyue / Ti Gong

Lujiazui Library has turned the conventional public library into a themed reading venue with local DNA.

In an age of smartphones and iPads, the Pudong New Area is actively working to promote the idea of reading, while also actively cooperating with top scholars and musicians to give the district a cultural identity.

Newly renovated Lujiazui Library, which opened yesterday, has turned the conventional public library into a themed reading venue and encoded it with local DNA.

Sandwiched between high-rises in the city’s bustling Lujiazui financial hub, it is designed to cater to the white-collar workers in the area, many of whom have overseas financial background.

Officials said it is the city’s first finance-themed public library. Nearly one fifth of the total 50,000 books are foreign editions.

Select Zhangjiang, unveiled yesterday, is the perfect home for the geeks. It is located in the Zhangjiang Science City, home to startups, incubators and industry leaders such as China’s largest audio platform Ximalaya FM and e-learning platform Hujiang.com.

So, books on technologies, not available elsewhere in the city, can be found here. Select Zhangjiang has plans to become the country’s first platform of its kind to locally developed “black technology,” referring to technology far more advanced than today's reality.

Ti Gong

Located in the Zhangjiang Science City, Select Zhangjiang is the perfect home for the geeks. 

Ti Gong

Dayin Bookmall is the first reading venue and bookstore in Lingang area and is keen to promote the “sharing book” concept. 

Dayin Bookmall, the first reading venue and bookstore in Lingang area, also opened yesterday and is promoting the “sharing book” program.

Though officially a bookstore, it allows readers to borrow books worth no more than 300 yuan (US$47.7) free of charge but has to be returned within seven days. It meets the local demand for reading and makes up for the lack of public library in the area.

The bookstore tries to promote a relaxing and interesting lifestyle. It has more than 2,000 volumes of travel books. A variety of cultural activities, from concerts to DIY salon, are on the store’s agenda for the year.

Meanwhile, the Pudong government has signed cultural cooperation with ten top Chinese writers, scholars and artists.

They include world renowned pianists Lang Lang and Liu Shikun, composer Chen Gang and painter Chen Qi, writers and scholars like Ge Jianxiong, Zhou Guoping, Yi Zhongtian, Ye Xin, He Jianming and Zhang Weiwei.

Officials said they will be part of a “think tank,” and their advice will be sought while making the cultural development plan for Pudong. Yi and Ye will have reading venues named after them, and He will write about Pudong. Liu will help set up an international piano festival, and Chen will compose songs on Pudong.

Lu Hao / Ti Gong

Pianist Lang Lang has a cross-cultural cooperation vision to create "something new for the world.”  

“It’s amazing that I have been chosen as one of the ten artists,” Lang said. “Previously, I just played at concerts, maybe once a year, in Pudong. But in the near future, I can engage in something that will allow easy access to my music."

He however didn’t reveal any plans.

Lang also sees it as a golden opportunity to create cross-cultural cooperation by gathering different people who are top in their fields.

“I see it as a very international and inclusive platform. I plan to invite my friends, musicians, painters and even high technology entrepreneurs, to Pudong. We may together create something new for the world.” 

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