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Gym center re-creation on the ball
From:Shanghai Daily  |  2018-10-10 01:29

THE city’s landmark gymnastic center in western downtown is being rebuilt to update its facilities while retaining its classic appearance.

The main structure of the Shanghai International Gymnastic Center on Wuyi Road in Changning District has been demolished and will be rebuilt on site, larger and with cutting-edge equipment.

The new center will be able to host higher level international sports events as well as serve as a major exercise site for locals, the district government said yesterday.

The city’s only specialized gymnastic site was built in 1997 as the main venue for the 8th National Games. It also hosted many domestic gymnastic events.

When not being used for competitions it was open to the public. It was also the biggest public indoor badminton site in downtown.

However, after decades of operation, the center could no longer meet the standard to host major international competitions.

Its field was too small for top level international events, while audience seating was inadequate. The height of its training rooms could not meet the requirements of trampoline training. The appearance of the structure was worn. And equipment was old and unsafe.

The center was still popular with local residents.

“I took my son to the center almost every day to play or take part in various sports. Thanks to the experiences, he become a gym teacher at a local school now,” said a resident surnamed Xu.

Xu said she remembered the original building at the site was the Huxi Stadium, dubbed one of Shanghai’s three major sports venues in the 1990s along with the Jiangwan Stadium in Yangpu and Hongkou Football Stadium.

The old gym center, featuring a 35-meter tall sphere covered by blue glass curtain walls, had long been a landmark in the western downtown. The Changning government launched the re-construction project in September.

The new center, covering 30,000 square meters, will be used for sports training, performance and public exercise. It will be able to host the highest level of international sports.

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