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July 31, 2010

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Traffic will get worse: officials

TRAFFIC authorities warned yesterday that the city's transport network faces increasing pressure in the next three months as more tourists come to Shanghai for the World Expo.

The number of tourists coming to the city is rising, officials said.

Shen Xiaosu, deputy director of the city's transport and construction commission, said yesterday that "crowds and congestion will be more severe as the peak arrives."

Elevated roads and subway lines are expected to be especially crowded in the next few months, Shen said.

Gridlock may get worse on the South-North Elevated Road, Humin Elevated Road and the Middle Ring Road, Shen said.

The Metro network now serves more than 6 million passengers a day and the number is expected to break 7 million soon.

More than 360,000 tourists arrive in the city everyday now, a 12.5 percent increase from June. Of those, 150,000 are group tourists arriving on buses, traffic authorities said.

The newly opened Shanghai-Nanjing high-speed railway also brings more visitors, officials said.

The volume will continue to rise and is expected to peak in October, Shen said.

Officials said about 95 percent of people use public transport when going to the Expo.

Shen said traffic organizers will increase transport capacities to handle the higher volume and study passenger flows before imposing any traffic controls.


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