Beijing's Sanlitun bar street closed for redevelopment

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Sanlitun Bar Street, Beijing's first and largest bar community, is shutting down for redevelopment, though the "Sanlitun Bar Street" brand will be retained due to its popularity.

The street, which is near the Taikooli shopping center in east Beijing's Chaoyang district, was established in the 1990s. 

An appraisal carried out by a third-party organization gave the structures on the street a D grade for safety and integrity, meaning the venues are unsafe for operation, said Wei Lei, deputy director of the Sanlitun Subdistrict Community Office.

"We urgently need to eliminate the buildings' safety hazards and then have them reinforced, so we've asked the business owners to vacate the properties," Wei said, adding that other types of businesses, such as coffee shops and restaurants offering healthy food will be encouraged to open on the street.

Since the bar street was popular, "we would like to maintain the brand and introduce new businesses offering coffee and light food," Wei said.

According to Wei, the renovation of the bar street will soon begin in parallel with the construction of a walking trail.

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