Chengdu, 13 April 2017 – UN-Habitat and UN-Environment, in collaboration with the Chengdu Municipal People’s Government, have started working on an assessment of the development plans for the city’s Greenbelt and Shaocheng District.

The experts of both UN agencies met with government officials in March in Chengdu to launch the implementation of the joint project titled “Urban Renewal and Green Space Development in Chengdu, China”. The Greener Cities Partnership is the coordinating entity of this joint activity.

Deputy Mayor of the city, Mr. Liu Shoucheng, said: “We are looking forward to receiving valuable expertise and an international perspective that UN-Habitat and UN-Environment provide”.

Members from all Municipal Bureaus were present in the various meetings, including the Environment, Construction and Planning Bureaus, providing their insights into the work that is planned together with the two UN entities.

Both activities safeguard the city’s natural and cultural heritage

The expert team from UN-Habitat and UN-Environment visited four different sites within the 198 km2 greenbelt of the city. This was followed by several meetings with the municipality, discussing strategies on how to improve the planning and implementation of the activity. During the sessions, questions were raised on how to make the greenbelt more environmentally friendly, and how to design the different segments in a way that they serve multiple purposes at the same time. Not only does the belt contain sprawl and help lift urban air pollution, it is also serves the citizens for recreation, urban agriculture, economic and cultural activity, jobs, and more.

Secondly, the joint team visited Shaocheng District. It is a historic inner-city neighborhood which draws over two million tourists annually. The municipality has requested the UN’s support in building on the strengths of the neighborhood, and evading possible risks – such as those of gentrification, land price increase, and the excess of economic activity dominating the cultural functions of the district.

The two assessment reports, due to be finalized by the end of the year, will aim to provide the city with a framework to make the planning and implementation of the two key areas more efficient, greener, with an improved focus on safeguarding the cultural and natural heritages. This activity is a joint process, hands in hands with the municipality, ensuring a participatory planning process with key stakeholders.