Beijing drops out of top 10 'best city' list
By Fu Jing (China Daily)
Updated: 2006-01-03 06:32
Beijing may be the nation's capital, but according to a recent survey, it
does not even rank in China's top 10 cities in terms of suitability for living.
The city came 15th in the list, as compared to third in
2004, due to its bad traffic, high housing prices and heavy pollution.
Vehicles are caught in a traffic jam in
Beijing in this file photo. [newsphoto]
Coastal city Dalian in Northeast China was selected as China's most suitable
city for living, followed by Xiamen, also a coastal city, in East China's Fujian
Following were Mianyang in Southwest China's Sichuan Province and the
provincial capital Chengdu; Wuhan, provincial capital of Hubei; Hangzhou,
capital of Zhejiang; Shanghai; Nanjing, provincial capital of Jiangsu Province;
Qingdao in Shandong Province; and Chongqing Municipality.
Beijing was not the only other well-known city to miss the top 10: Tianjin,
Shenzhen, Xi'an and Guangzhou also lost out.
The list was compiled last month by Beijing-based polling agency Horizon
Group after interviewing 3,434 urban residents aged between 18-65, and 1,604
The urban habitable index, which takes traffic, environment, social welfare
and security into account, averaged 65.7 out of 100 points. "The findings
indicated that there is much room for improvement in Chinese cities," the
polling agency said.
The agency listed major problems faced by Chinese cities such as shortage of
housing supplies, tough job markets, lack of or poor waste water and garbage
treatment, and pollution.
Social groups differ over the degree of satisfaction with cities.
"Investors and high-income groups showed a high degree of satisfaction, but
low-income groups were generally dissatisfied because of soaring housing prices
and grim employment situation," said the polling agency.
The Chinese mainland has about 660 cities and 41 per cent of its population
are urbanites. By 2020, the rate is expected to surpass 60 per cent.
(China Daily 01/03/2006 page1)