Chengdu ranks among most livable cities in China
Updated: 2012-01-09 14:28
By Yang Jingya (chinadaily.com.cn)
Chengdu won an award in an evaluation of the most livable cities in China on Dec 26 in Nanjing, the provincial capital of Southeast China's Jiangsu Province.
Chengdu, along with four other cities (Hangzhou, Changsha, Ningbo, and Kunming) was awarded with a special honor for winning the title five years in a row.
The ceremony is held annually to award Chinese cities that excel in improving the living conditions of its residents. It was co-hosted by the Oriental Outlook magazine and the working committee for the China Urban Development Report of the China Association of Mayors.
The shortlist of winners was based on a survey involving 200,000 households and an online questionnaire for 37,000 people. As many as 20 assessment criteria were taken into account, including transportation, housing prices, quality of health care and education.
As most cities in China are scrambling for space and resources to accommodate the increasing population, Chengdu offers a good example of the harmonious and sustainable development between urban and rural areas.
According to Gou Zhengli, vice mayor of the Chengdu, the government has been making efforts to reform social service systems, such as social security, education and health care, to benefit all people.
In 2011, Chengdu invested nearly 23 billion yuan ($3.65 billion) in programs concerning agriculture, rural areas and farmers. The income gap between urban and rural areas narrowed and the net income for rural residents was 8,205 yuan per year. The disposable income for urbanites was 20,835 yuan per person, increasing by 15.1 percent and 11.7 percent respectively.
Chengdu boasts a rich culture of tea and cuisine which adds traits of romance and leisure to the people's characteristics. According to Gou, the pursuit of happiness is rooted in the nature of the Chengdu people.
The Nanjing Declaration on Livable Cities was released at the ceremony and noted that the key element to building a happy and livable city lies in putting the citizens' needs first.