Shanghai's 2040 blueprint promises in future Shanghai "joggers can run through city parks freely and rest on grasslands when their legs tire."
That vision will be realized soon as construction has started on the city's largest public sports venue, which aims to meet the rising demands of sports enthusiasts and residents to be able to undertake more exercise.
Xujiahui Sports Park, covering 359,600 square meters by Caoxi Road N., Lingling Road, Tianyaoqiao Road and Zhongshan No. 2 Road S., will include major sports venues, running tracks and spacious green areas upon its opening by the end of 2019.
"It will become a future landmark and world-class sports complex," according to the city government's ambition.
The park will stay open round the clock and will incorporate the existing stadium, gymnasium and swimming pool, along with the high-rise office building Dongya Mansion — all four structures are undergoing major renovation.
Other existing structures within the designated park area will be replaced by trees, jogging lanes and outdoor sports fields covering about 300,000 square meters.
Shanghai Stadium, Shanghai Gymnasium and Shanghai Swimming Pool have been insufficient to carry the city's ambition to become an "international sports games capital," Shanghai Sports Bureau said.
A bureau official added that the sports park "will host top sports events, meet the rising demands of local residents on sports and recreation, carry out training for amateur teenage athletes as well as guide the development of sports industries." The operation center will be headquartered in Dongya Sports Mansion. The building will be renovated to synchronize its appearance with other park structures.
Other parts of the park will be categorized into the northern "aerobics park" and the southern "athletics park," according to the bureau. There will be two ring-shaped running tracks — one 2.3 kilometers long, the other 1.8km.
An underground venue will be built at the south of the gymnasium for the public to take part in sports. It will consist of 40 badminton fields, 30 table tennis fields, three tennis courts, and other sites for fencing, boxing, yoga and dancing.
Trees will be planted, especially along Zhongshan No.2 Road S., to block the noise and vehicle emissions from a nearby elevated highway.