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Flowing through time

China Daily | Updated: 2022-02-18 15:18
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Passing through eight provinces and municipalities, the 3,200-kilometer Grand Canal dates back about 2,500 years. In 2014, 27 sections of the canal gained UNESCO World Heritage status.[Photo provided to China Daily]

The Grand Canal is a vast waterway system in China, running from Beijing in the north to Zhejiang province in the south. It stretches for nearly 3,200 kilometers and passes through eight of the country’s provinces and municipalities.

Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, the canal is the longest and oldest artificial river in the world. It has played an important role in ensuring China’s economic prosperity and stability, and is in use today as a major means of transportation.

The Beijing section of the Grand Canal is 82 km long. Along it, cultural relics and sites on both banks are important symbols of culture and are considered a top priority for protection by the local government.

A major mechanism for promoting the construction of the Grand Canal Cultural Belt has been established.

The mechanism features both overall and detailed plans, including a long-term blueprint, midterm action plans and annual reviews. Over the past three years, a total of 88 key projects have been carried out.

The city government has unveiled two development plans: the first is an implementation plan for the protection, inheritance and utilization of the canal’s cultural values; the second is a construction plan for building a Grand Canal-themed national cultural park.

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