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About 30 TOD Projects in China's Chongqing under Planning or Construction

By RAN ZHENGICHONGQING|May 11,2022

Chongqing- By constructing a “metropolitan area on the rail,” Southwest China’s Chongqing Municipality is reshaping the urban spatial development pattern, driving the economic and social development along the rail transit line, and improving the life quality of residents. The development of transit-oriented development (TOD) plays a crucial role in achieving these goals. So far, about 30 TOD projects in Chongqing are under planning or construction.

Chongqing now has 11 urban rail transit lines with a mileage of 417 km.

Chongqing now has 11 urban rail transit lines with a mileage of 417 km. (iChongqing file photo)

Exploration and practice

TOD stands for transit-oriented development of the city. Centered on the rail transit station, the TOD model carries out highly intensive development within 600-800 meters (5-10 minutes walking distance) to combine functional work areas, business, culture, education, residence, and tourism.

“The concept of TOD was born in the United States in the 1990s. There are mainly three TOD models globally,” said Chu Dongzhu, General Manager and Chief Architect of Chongqing Architectural Design Institute Co., Ltd.

In North American countries, TOD is used to reshape urban spaces to facilitate urban expansion. In European countries, combined with the urban renewal based on old urban areas with rich historic resources, TOD is used to ease the pressure on ground traffic, creating a better walking experience in the urban public space. In Asian countries, the total population of large cities is generally more extensive than that of European and American cities, causing immense land pressure. Therefore, TOD is manifested as three-dimensional upgrading of transportation hubs and secondary development around stations.

Since the CRT Line 2 (Jiaochangkou-Xinshancun section) started construction in 2000 as Chongqing’s first rail transit line, Chongqing has taken the lead in exploring the rail transit TOD. The Liziba Station Complex Building, a TOD project known for “train running through the residential building,” has become a must-see attraction for tourists in Chongqing

"Train running through the residential building" TOD project — CRT Liziba Station Complex Building 

“Train running through the residential building” TOD project — CRT Liziba Station Complex Building. (iChongqing file photo)

Chongqing now has eleven urban rail transit lines with a mileage of 417 km, ranking first in central and western China and eighth in the whole country. In 2021, Chongqing’s passenger volume of rail transit came to 1.1 billion person-times, ranking sixth in the country.

Chongqing’s TOD development model

In December 2020, the TOD project of Longfor Guangnian Jinsha Paradise Walk was officially put into operation in Shapingba, Chongqing. Inside the TOD, the Fuxing EMU train can reach Chengdudong Railway Station, which is about 300 km away, in only 62 minutes. This is China’s first high-speed rail TOD project in the business area. It is a three-dimensional transfer system, including the high-speed railway, rail transit, and bus. The newly built business center has become an ideal leisure and entertainment destination for nearby residents.

Longfor Guangnian Jinsha Paradise Walk, China's first high-speed rail TOD project in the business area .

Longfor Guangnian Jinsha Paradise Walk, China’s first high-speed rail TOD project in the business area. (iChongqing file photo)

In April 2021, the TOD project of The Ring Park officially opened, which is close to two CRT lines. Within two days, the passenger flow exceeded 570,500 person-times, and the shopping mall sales topped 31.8 million yuan (about 4.7 million U.S. dollars), driving the local economic development.

Chongqing has introduced world-class consulting institutions such as PCKK, AECOM, and T.Y.LIN to facilitate TOD development with better planning.

Soon, TOD will bring convenience to more Chongqing people. In the “metropolitan area on the rail,” Chongqing people will access more new scenarios of a better life.

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