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August 1, 2011

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Building a successful eco-system

SITUATED on Hangzhou Bay, man-made City Beach in Jinshan District is not only a cool place to cool off, literally, but also a cool place to chill and enjoy entertainment, festival and sports meets.

The beach has been the venue for the men's and women's beach volleyball China Open for eight years. It's the site of the national beach football match, a kite flying contest, Summer Beach Music Festival, Elite Model International (China) Finals and many other events.

From 2004-2006, the Summer Beach Music Festival attracted more than 100,000 visitors listening to pop stars from Hong Kong and Taiwan and other parts of Asia.

Since 2005, Jinshan District has launched a series of projects to create a safe, clean beach and area for swimming and water sports. In 2007 a 3.3-kilometer-long, 5.4-meter-high breakwater was built to enclose 1.75 square kilometers of the shallow and usually muddy South China Sea. Fish, shrimp and shellfish were introduced. Artificial coral reefs and sunken ships were built to attract coral and sea life. Experts introduced a large amount of seaweed that can absorb heavy metal pollutants.

Now after four years, a stable ecological system has been created. Water visibility is 6 meters, meeting national standards.

The man-made beach covers 120,000 square meters and includes a 1.7-kilometer-long boardwalk where visitors can stroll along and see distant Jinshan Island, one of the city's last spots that is free of pollution.

Since June 10, around 350,000 people have visited the beach, twice the number for the same period last year. Last summer from June through August, there were 740,000 visits; the daily high was 32,800 visits.


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