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Green lanes draw line

NEW unified rules for pavilions' green channels - or express lanes - are coming, senior organizers said yesterday, in hopes of keeping unqualified people from using the quicker entrances.

The Expo bureau hopes that unified rules will be applied to all pavilions' green channels, but cooperation from pavilions are necessary, said Xu Zuhua, deputy director of the Visitors Service Center of the Expo site.

Babies in toddlers, seniors over 70 with a certificate, physically challenged visitors and pregnant women are among those qualified to skip the long queues outside the most popular pavilions.

Shanghai Daily has seen many pavilions allowing visitors who didn't quite meet the qualifications, especially old people who were between 65 to 70 years old, to use the green channels.

Some popular pavilions, with long queues even in the green channels, have changed their qualifications and rules as the staff saw the service abused: healthy people using wheelchairs, for instance.

Staff have become stricter. Some pavilions have even shut their green channels down.

The Sweden Pavilion closed its green channel on Monday.

"It happened not only once that ordinary visitors tried to take advantage of the green channel," said Victoria Bei, the pavilion's spokesperson. Last week, a healthy young man in his 30s pushed a staff member as he tried to break into the green channel.

"We are sorry for the elderly and the handicapped, but it's a decision after careful consideration," Bei told Shanghai Daily.

"We hope that visitors would have a better understanding about the meaning and the function of the green channel."

She said the pavilion currently had no plan to re-open the channel.

Germany's pavilion has asked those who use the green channel to reserve in advance. Staff from the pavilion hand out limited reservation tickets, which are usually gone quickly.

The Expo bureau plans to broadcast messages to visitors, asking them to obey the rules, said Hong Hao, director general of the Bureau of Shanghai World Expo Coordination.


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