China / Society

Zhangjiakou, Beijing bid for Winter Olympics

By Luo Wangshu in Beijing and Zheng Jinran in Hebei ( Updated: 2014-03-12 19:02

An application to co-host the 2022 Winter Olympic Games aims to encourage winter sports among Chinese people.

"China is doing great in Summer Olympics but how about the winter ones?" asked Xing Guohui, Party chief of Zhangjiakou, Hebei province, which is bidding to co-host the 2022 Winter Olympic Games with Beijing.

Xing, who is also a deputy to the National People's Congress, believes that if the Winter Olympic Games are held in Hebei, it will ignite Chinese people's enthusiasm for winter sports.

Beijing and Zhangjiakou launched their joint bid on Nov 3.

Hou Liang, the mayor of Zhangjiakou and also an NPC deputy, said the city opened two winter sports schools in Chongli and Guyuan counties, to attract more residents to the sports.

Liu Yuntao, a native of Xi'an, Shaanxi province, took her 7-year-old son to Chongli to learn skiing. "We are quite curious about skiing after hearing of the joint bid," the 42-year-old said, adding that her son learned faster than she did, and she has decided to purchase more lessons for the boy.

However, they both complained about the inconvenience of traveling to Chongli.

"It's not convenient to get there as no direct flights link the snow county to other cities," she said.

Zhang Jing, a skiing enthusiast, said the government needs to learn from Salt Lake City in Utah and provide more travel options if they want to host the Winter Olympics.

Mayor Hou said the city has made plans in 10 areas, including transportation, infrastructure and environment protection, to prepare for the games.

He said the detailed plans will be released in July.

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