Beijing's oldest night market to close

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail CRI, June 12, 2016
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The Donghuamen night market, a fixture in downtown Beijing for the past 32 years, has announced it will shut down by the end of this month.

File photo of the Donghuamen night market in Beijing. [Photo:]

File photo of the Donghuamen night market in Beijing. [Photo:] 

Noise levels and hygiene problems at the market are to blame.

An inspector of Beijing's Dongcheng District Food and Drug Administration says the unhygienic food storage conditions in the stalls and improper management of food waste disposals have led to concerns of food hygiene at the market.

The noises from shouting vendors until midnight everyday have also long disturbed residents of the area.

Frequent traffic congestion caused by the crowds at the market is another factor that has led to the closure.

However, authorities are planning to replace the night market with a reconstructed street, which would also improve traffic conditions.

Established in the 1980s, the Donghuamen night market has always offered a variety of Chinese finger foods and snacks along a 200-meter long street.

It was the first night market in Beijing to open after the People's Republic of China was established in 1949, offering cheap and tasty traditional local foods.

It has also become an attraction for foreign tourists. Travel guide website TripAdvisor has recommended the market as one of the 1,500 places to visit in Beijing, ranking it at the 55th place.

But some Beijing locals say the Donghuamen night market over the years has turned into a commercial tourist trap, with few offerings of truly authentic Beijing foods.

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