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Three sections of expressway open to public, more highways planned
26/12/2005 14:36

Shanghai Daily news

Three new sections of expressway in the city's southern suburbs were put into use yesterday, completing a highway network that should allow drivers to travel from one part of the city to any other part in less than an hour.
Government officials also announced yesterday the city plans to build 320 kilometers of new expressways over the next five years including a highway linking the Pudong International Airport with Zhejiang Province.
"The three new expressways will enhance the city's expressway network to serve the entire Yangtze Delta Region," Shi Guanghui, deputy director of the Shanghai Engineering Administrative Bureau, said at an inauguration ceremony yesterday.
The ceremony marked the opening of a 21-kilometer-long north-south section of the A6 Expressway, a 28-kilometer-long section of the A30 Expressway, and a 13-kilometer-long stretch of the A7 Expressway.
Shi said the three new expressways, which are mostly located within suburban Jinshan District, will sharply reduce the amount of time needed to drive from downtown to Jinshan. Previously, the drive took more than 90 minutes.
The new expressways are also expected to facilitate transport between Shanghai and neighboring Zhejiang Province, particularly containers from the recently opened Yangshan Deep Water Port.
Currently, the city's highway network covers 560 kilometers, including some 400 kilometers constructed since 2001.
Traffic officials said the network should allow drivers to find an expressway entrance within 15 minutes of any location in the city.
They also said by 2010, the city will be linked by six highways to Jiangsu Province and four expressways to Zhejiang Province.
Currently, there are three highways linking Shanghai to Jiangsu and only one to Zhejiang.
Shanghai's highway network will cover 880 kilometers by 2010.
Construction has already started on an 80-kilometer-long expressway linking the Pudong Airport with Hangzhou. The project is expected to be finished by 2008.
As the number of private cars in the city has increased by nearly 4,000 percent over the past six years, more and more locals drive to neighboring provinces, which has created demand for additional highways, traffic authorities said.