Shanghai (1927-1937)/ Transportation system plan in the Greater Shanghai Plan (Part II)

Part II

The construction and connection between Woo-sung port and Shanghai North Railway Station were the indispensable parts of realizing the goal of “removing and replacing the foreign settlements”.[1]

Within the transportation plan in Greater Shanghai Plan, the development of the port was also a crucial part. The original port was mostly controlled by the foreign settlements for the reason that its location was mostly within the foreign settlements area. The port within the Chinese sections was at a disadvantage position. “Water transportation is the lifeline of industry and commerce development. Its importance is equivalent to the railway transportation connecting to inner land”.[2] Hence, the new plan for the harbor was essential at the starting point of picking the new city center location. In 1929, the city center construction council brought up the New Harbor Plan. Moreover, the connection between harbor and railway station was also crucial for the Greater Shanghai Plan. “It’s such a shame that current port had no relation to the railway system”.[3] In 1930, the plan for railway system was brought up. The train station for goods and passengers would be separated. Connections between port and goods station would be made in order to achieve joint water-rail transport.[4] In 1932, the plan further indicated that the railway would be moved towards the west and connect the railway system with Qiujiang Port which is a transitional mean. The plan was too hard to be carried out in short time and demanded too much money, an alternative plan was created.[5] The Qiujiang Port is “easy to be constructed, less money consuming.”[6] The plan eventually failed and turned out to be only a transitional plan for the Qiujiang Port.

All in all, as mentioned in the post of “fail of the plan” and the previous blog, the great plan didn’t match with the capacity of the government. When the plan was carried out, most of the goals were compromised because of lacking money. Shenyi, as a planner, was quite eclectic and practical which affected the plan through her personal perspectives. Some of the roads were just expansion and reconstruction based on the current road system. The planning method in the Greater Shanghai Plan is influential. Even today, the image of grand park, avenue, boulevard, massive singular architecture occupying a large piece of land are the key parts of the planning visions.[7] The grandiose building speaks of the importance and significance of the user behind the architecture which is the administration and power. This top-down planning led by city government is continuously being applied to modern cities.

Though the plan was interrupted by the war in 1937, it had some positive influences to the later city planning. The Greater Shanghai Plan reorganized the old city center while also brought up the construction of new civic center to compete with foreign settlements. The road system was intended to lead to a gradual urban expansion for the old city center. The connection between the railway station and the unbuilt port was a visionary move. The infrastructure construction was proved to be the essential element in city development. The connectivity and corporation between land and water transportation is still a vital mean for port city development.

 

http://www.virtualshanghai.net/Asset/Preview/vcMap_ID-422_No-1.jpeg

Map of the Greater Shanghai Plan  大上海計劃圖 ,1934, Shanghai shizheng gaiyao 上海市政概要 [A Brief Account of the Shanghai Municipal Administration]. Shanghai, Shanghai shi zhengfu mishuchu, 1934. The map shows the important entrance in the north where the Woo-sung port situates and the planned new civic center in the north part of Shanghai. The grid-based road system is far away from the city center at that time.From the map, we can understand the major points about transportation system. That is the construction of new ports and planning the arteries in the new city center.

 

Endnotes

[1] Shen Yi沈怡, Biography of Shen Yi, 《沈怡自述》, (Taiwan Zhuan Ji Wen Xue Chu Ban She, 台湾传记文学出版社,1985), 113-114

[2] Shanghai City Archives上海市档案馆,Jian Zhu Qiu Jiang Ma Tou Yu Fan Rong Shang Hai Zhi Guan Xi《建筑虬江码头与繁荣上海之关系》,Q213-1-10,中央银行与建虬江码头卷,1935

[3]  Shanghai Shi Shi Zhong Xin Qu Yu Jian She Wei Yuan Hui上海市市中心区域建设委员会,Shanghai Shi Shi Zhong Xin Qu Yu Jian She Wei Yuan Hui Ye Wu Bao Gao Shi Ba Nian Ba Yue Zhi Shi Jiu Nian Liu Yue《上海市市中心区建设委员会业务报告(十八年八月至十九年六月)》,《铁道计划之部》1930,16

[4] Shanghai Shi Shi Zhong Xin Qu Yu Jian She Wei Yuan Hui上海市市中心区域建设委员会,Shanghai Shi Shi Zhong Xin Qu Yu Jian She Wei Yuan Hui Ye Wu Bao Gao Shi Ba Nian Ba Yue Zhi Shi Jiu Nian Liu Yue《上海市市中心区建设委员会业务报告(十八年八月至十九年六月)》,《铁道计划之部》 1930,16-18

[5] Wei Shu魏枢, <The Greater Shanghai Plan> Qi Shi Lu—Jin Dai Shanghai Hua Jie Du Shi Zhong Xin Kong Jian Xing Tai De Liu Bian《大上海计划》启示录——近代上海华界都市中心空间形态的流变, (Southeast University Press 东南大学出版社, 1995), 111

[6] Shanghai Shi Shi Zhong Xin Qu Yu Jian She Wei Yuan Hui上海市市中心区域建设委员会,Shanghai Shi Shi Zhong Xin Qu Yu Jian She Wei Yuan Hui Ye Wu Bao Gao Di Er Qi《上海市市中心区域建设委员会业务报告第二期》,1933,57

[7] Wei Shu魏枢, <The Greater Shanghai Plan> Qi Shi Lu—Jin Dai Shanghai Hua Jie Du Shi Zhong Xin Kong Jian Xing Tai De Liu Bian《大上海计划》启示录——近代上海华界都市中心空间形态的流变, (Southeast University Press 东南大学出版社, 1995), 147

2 Comments on “Shanghai (1927-1937)/ Transportation system plan in the Greater Shanghai Plan (Part II)

  1. In the post, the importance of joint water-rail transportation is highlighted. However, the planning of the new port development is failed due to the lack of capital. Nowadays, Shanghai is one of the largest port in the world and the shipping trade becomes one of the most important industry in Shanghai.So I’m wondering that is the planning of ports in Greater Shanghai Plan had an impact on the future development of the ports in Shanghai?

    • As a city with excellent water transportation advantages, the development of ports was never stopped. Although a series of urban plan was made by different powers controlling Shanghai, each of them stressed on the development of ports on Huangpu River and the entry area to the sea. Please kindly find out more about the influence of the Greater Shanghai Plan in other posts. You could find more information about the ports development there.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.