Shenzhen has been renowned for its role as a national innovation and technology city for many years. But its innovation journey is far from over. The Outline Development Plan for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA) published in February highlighted that Shenzhen should expedite its transformation into a modern and international city, and strive to become a capital of innovation and creativity with global influence.
Longgang district – an important base for high technology and high-end manufacturing in Shenzhen – has been awarded as the National Science and Technology Progress Advanced District, the National Science and Technology Progress Demonstration Zone as well as the National Science Popularization Demonstration Zone. The district is considered to be a future independent innovation zone in Shenzhen.
With its GDP reaching 385 billion RMB in 2017, ranking second in Shenzhen city, it is evident that the district is growing rapidly. To understand first-hand the local opportunities that abound under the latest round of development, China Committee Chairman Petrina Tam led a 40-member delegation to Longgang, Shenzhen on April 12 to visit several newly completed commercial complexes and innovative industrial parks.
The delegation first stopped by the project Longcheng Vanke, which opened at the end of 2017. With a total area of 100,000 square meters – and adjacent to Vanke Mall, Longcheng Plaza, Book City Longgang Store as well as a youth centre, a science museum and an art gallery – it is committed to shaping itself into a new icon for leisure in the area. The project has integrated greening and environmental protection with business elements by using a dome skylight to bring in natural light. This ecological roof of the mall helps provide a comfortable public space for residents.
Delegates next visited Longgang Public Art Gallery and City Planning Pavilion. Not only is the pavilion a key public cultural project with a focus on public education, but it is also a major contributor to Shenzhen’s growing role as a city of culture. It showcases the achievement of Longgang district in economic development, urban construction, livelihood, and reform and innovation.
The art gallery, on the other hand, displays interesting artworks from all over the world including creative Chinese art designs. In one of the exhibition halls, exhibits are categorized based on their material types, such as wood, bamboo, paper, soil, gold and plastics. There are also collections of daily use items such as bicycles, chairs, earbuds and lighting fittings, which give full expression to the integration of life with art.
Representatives from Shenzhen Hazens Real Estate Group Co Ltd had lunch with the delegates to introduce the latest progress of the development of Longgang district. To release more public and urban space, the district has been undergoing a project of urban renewal since 2004. It has launched more than 200 policies so far, with projects placing emphasis on providing better living facilities and safeguarding public interest.
By the end of December in 2018, Longgang district had completed 14 urban renewal projects in total, which freed land of 810,000 square metres for supply. Hazens Group is one of the first real estate enterprises that engaged in development in this area. In the beginning, the purpose of the project was “old cities transformation” while today it has developed into an example of Shenzhen’s successful transformation and renewal.
While urban renewal can help enhance land use and industrial structure, technological application can help build a smart city to improve living standards of citizens.
In the afternoon, the delegation visited Smart Longgang Exhibition and Experience Centre to explore how the centre applies Internet, Internet of Things and artificial intelligence to everyday life for greater convenience. The Smart Centre is regarded as the “smart city brain in Longgang,” and is a mix of city operation and management, video conferencing, smart city experiences, and administrative data computer rooms.
Delegates also visited the national-grade technology business incubator, Software Town of Shenzhen Universiade. It is committed to promoting the transformation and upgrade of industries by encouraging enterprises to cooperate with higher education institutions to provide a platform for innovation and entrepreneurship. Other major enterprises members visited in the district include Shenzhen Longer 3D Technology Co Ltd and Landing Med Lab.