How far we've come: Looking back on transportation in 1980s Shanghai

In the 1980s, stagnant traffic, overstuffed housing and a collapsing environment were the three major problems perplexing Shanghai people.

Filmed and edited by Ma Xuefeng. Translated by Xiang Ying. Polished by Andy Boreham.

Looking down on the elevated road from the Shanghai Daily office at dusk, the car lights form an endless stream. For a city of more than 24 million people, efficient public transportation is crucial to making sure the city runs smoothly. With the world’s largest Metro system and bus routes zigzagging to almost every corner of the city, navigating Shanghai has never been easier.

But turn back the clock 40 years, and it was a totally different story. In the 1980s, stagnant traffic, overstuffed housing and a collapsing environment were the three major problems facing Shanghai people.

Of the three, public transportation was perhaps the most troubling, something people struggled with on a daily basis.

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