President Jiang Tours Beijing Ahead of 50th Anniversary
Chinese President Jiang Zemin toured Beijing on September 19,the national capital that is undergoing a blitz of construction and other eye-popping changes in the days leading up to the 50th anniversary of the People's Republic of China.
Jiang visited the newly-widened Ping'an Street, accompanied by Vice-Premier Wen Jiabao, Beijing's Communist party chief Jia Qinglin and other senior officials.
The president praised the Beijing authorities for paying attention to the preservation of ancient buildings and cultural relics along the street during the expansion.
He was apparently delighted to see the clear water in newly- dredged Shishahai Lake, adjacent to the street, and the flowers that have been placed on the bank.
At one point, he got out of his car and shook hands with citizens, spending leisurely moments with them, and even hugged a three-year-old boy.
Gesturing toward the clear water, the trees and the flowers, Jiang said that great changes have taken place in Beijing.
He told Beijing officials that the capital should have more such places where citizens could breath fresh air and exercise in the morning.
Jiang also toured the newly-widened Second and Third ring roads, as well as Dongsihuan Road, which has just opened to the traffic.
Standing on the Sihui Overpass at the intersection of Dongsihuan Road and Chang'an Street, Jiang was briefed on the capital's new roads construction by Beijing Vice-Mayor Wang Guangtao.
The president was told that the Sihui Overpass, occupying an area of 35 hectares and boasting 60,000 square meters of road space, is Beijing's largest overpass.
While passing the new lawn at Qianmen, the newly renovated Tian 'anmen, Chang'an Street and the Xizhimen Overpass, Jiang said he appreciated the efforts of Beijing municipal government to reduce traffic jams, cleaning up the environment and beautify the city.
Jiang also visited the newly-opened Wangfujing Street, Beijing' s most famous shopping street, where Asia's largest single building, the Oriental Square is almost finished.
He was greeted by a large number of workers in front of a building with music fountain. The president asked about the project's investment and the progress of the construction work. (Xinhua)
TopNews 1999-09-20 Page1
Full Story in Chinese