Say goodbye to unsightly overhead wires - city officials want more than 7,000 km of cable to go underground by 2010.
According to an action plan, the Shanghai municipal government wants "clearer skies" along major downtown roads, transportation hubs, tourist spots, historical sites and areas in and around World Expo Park.
The plan covers 125 roads, with a total length of 330 km, in 14 districts.
The Shanghai municipal engineering administration bureau said it wants de-clutter the sky and allay some public concern about exposure to high voltage radiation.
The densely-woven cables have long dominated the streetscapes, mostly because of the city's use of trolley buses powered by the overhead wires. Fewer routes still use trams today.
In the past five years, 12 percent of the city's suspended wires have been removed and another 12 percent will be moved underground in the next three years.
Moving the wires underground is expected to be a massive logistical task. However, the bureau said it would try to keep disruption to a minimum.
Dismantling of the wires will be conducted along with other needed infrastructure work to ensure project efficiency.
"New and creative technologies" will be adopted to ensure the quality of the work, the bureau said.
(China Daily July 31, 2007)