The State Council approved an overall plan (2011-2020) for the development of Hohhot, capital of North China’s Inner Mongolia autonomous region, in an official document published on Nov 17, underscoring the importance of coordinated development of urban and rural areas.
In the document, the State Council called on the local government to carry out integrated planning and management of the 2,176.7 square kilometers of the city’s planning area designated in the overall plan, focus on the development of counties, townships and villages with great potential for growth, and gradually improve the living conditions of villagers while preserving some characteristics of the countryside.
Construction of infrastructure and public service facilities should be expanded from urban areas to rural areas to promote equal public services, said the document.
As the political, economic and cultural center of Inner Mongolia, Hohhot is not only one of the national famous historical and cultural cities designated by the State Council, but also a key city in the border area of northern China, noted the document.
The State Council also called for reasonable control of the city size. It said that the permanent resident population in the central urban area should be kept within 2.58 million, and urban land used for construction should be kept within 310 square kilometers by 2020.
Intercity transportation infrastructure, such as highways, railways and airports, should be further improved to relieve the pressure of regional transit traffic, the document added.
Hohhot should be built as a resource-conserving and environment-friendly city by shutting down outdated production facilities, controlling emission of pollutants, tightening air pollution controls and supporting construction of green buildings, said the document.
The State Council also called on the local government to work out a specific plan for protecting the city’s status as a famous historical and cultural city, by preserving historical and cultural heritages, areas and buildings, focusing particularly on the Zhaojun Tomb and other cultural relics as well as their surroundings.
The Zhaojun Tomb is said to be the grave of Wang Zhaojun (about 52 to 15 BC), a commoner woman from the Han Empire who was married to a nomadic chieftain to establish friendly relations.