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Shenzhen plans more facilities and fitness
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Advanced indoor and outdoor sports facilities and colorful sports activities

Advanced indoor and outdoor sports facilities and colorful sports activities.

Sports authorities in Shenzhen have pledged to improve public sports facilities across the city to encourage recreation and the fitness of local residents.

When the plan is complete, seven of the nine administrative areas in Shenzhen will each have at least five sites for physical fitness, including a gymnasium, a physical check facility, a sports room for senior citizens and a fitness garden.

The plan calls for an increase in per capita public sports space to 1.2 sq m - a figure that excludes golf courses - in the next five years, according to the municipal sports bureau.

The blueprint also envisions that all residential neighborhoods will have indoor and outdoor sports facilities.

Sports authorities hope to close the gap with developed countries in the number of people routinely playing sports and taking exercise.

They also want 85 percent of local residents pass physical exams in the next five years

Since 2004, 73 million yuan from a sports lottery fund has been spent at city and district levels to build public sports facilities. Last year more than 4 million Shenzhen residents frequently engaged in some form of exercise.

Shenzhen natives who earned good scores at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games and the previous world championships include Luo Qian in synchronized swimming, Liu Hong in track and field and He Zi in diving.

City residents Xiao Yanhong and Zhang Santao had good results at the 2008 Beijing Paralympic Games.

Some 650 sports-related manufacturing companies are an important segment in the local economy, generating 3.19 billion yuan in output value last year.

Municipal authorities are also working to build a modern international educational system. Shenzhen now has nine full-time and one part-time institutions of higher learning.

A total of 109 universities and colleges from outside Shenzhen have branches in the city, including 52 with virtual campuses. More than 64,000 full-time and 60,000 part-time students were enrolled at its colleges last year along with 550,000 off-campus students.

The city's most prestigious school is Shenzhen University had 23,635 undergraduates, 2,236 postgraduates and 93 overseas students last year.

Tsinghua University, Peking University and Harbin Institute of Technology, among others, have branches in Shenzhen University Town, which focuses on postgraduate education.

The construction on Southern University of Science and Technology started in Shenzhen last year.

(China Daily July 7, 2009)

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