Opinion / Opinion Line

Urban flood waters show underground infrastructure still a hostage to vanity

(China Daily) Updated: 2015-07-31 08:14

Urban flood waters show underground infrastructure still a hostage to vanity

A man, surnamed Peng, carries his wife to wade across the flood under a flyover to catch a train in Jinhua, East China's Zhejiang province on July 21, 2015. [Photo/CFP]

Many inland Chinese cities, including Beijing, have once again been plagued by floods this rainy season, presenting "sea views" even in downtown areas. Presiding over a State Council executive meeting on Tuesday, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang stressed the need to build or refurbish the urban underground pipeline gallery, a corridor-like underground infrastructure for the installation of power, water, heating, telecommunications, gas and other systems. Comments:

China is undergoing fast urbanization, yet the construction of storm drains in many areas has been inadequate. It is more than necessary to speed up the construction of storm drains so that our cities are not flooded. The new type of urbanization should pay the same attention to down-to-earth necessities as surface presentation.

Li Keqiang, premier of China's State Council, July 28

For many Chinese cities, giving priority to "vanity projects" might be related to their lack of resources and financial support in the past, but it is beyond understanding that they resort to this out-dated preference today when money is no longer a problem. Underground water drainage systems are the shared responsibility of policymakers and urban planners in every city.

China Youth Daily, July 28

It requires sufficient funding to build and improve the storm sewer systems in cities to prevent relevant officials from scapegoating the rainstorms for the annual urban floods and to get rid of the urban "sea views" for good. Besides, drainage maintenance professionals should be hired to conduct regular inspections, and all departments concerned should fulfill their due responsibilities and receive punishments if they fail to do so., July 24

As the leading force of urban construction, local governments at all levels should adopt the unbiased perception of political achievements. In other words, they are supposed to put more efforts into building scientific underground drainage networks that are capable of dealing with the runoff from rainstorms even at peak periods. A city's image can only be fundamentally improved when its less observable infra-structure such as the drainage system functions properly as designed., July 24

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