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October 29, 2009

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Home » Metro » Public Services

Underground security prioritized

SHANGHAI should be more aware of security issues and improve technology to protect the public as it rapidly develops wide underground spaces, one of the city's top engineering experts said at an international tunneling forum yesterday.

As a city that is seeing rapid expansion of its subway and underground tunnel systems, Shanghai needs to upgrade its technology and management mechanisms to better safeguard people using these facilities, said Sun Jun, a Tongji University professor and academic of the China Academy of Sciences.

Sun called on the urban construction authority to beef up alarm systems at current and future subway stations so that risks such as fire or terrorism attacks are quickly detected.

He also urged the Metro operator to largely increase the number of escape routes around subway stations for emergency exits.

"Wherever possible, connection walkways need to be added between current underground complexes to widen escape channels in emergency situations," Sun said.

Apart from expanding Metro routes, city urban planners have other underground complexes under construction. They will integrate shopping and traffic-hub functions as they come into service in the next two years.

By the end of 2010, Wujiaochang area in the city's northeast, a planned new urban center, will have 270,000 square meters of underground levels completed.

This underground system will incorporate both traffic and commercial functions.

Urban planers said further construction would continue until 2020 when the Wujiaochang underground space would be expanded to cover an area of more than 1 million square meters.


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