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How to improve Shenzhen city?

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I have been invited to a forum to give suggestions on how to improve Shenzhen. I am looking for your suggestions on what you would like to improve in Shenzhen for life or for business. Off the top of my head

  • English Subway signs and maps
  • Increase hospital quality and capacity
  • Provide easier support for foreigners to start small foreign business such as restaurants and bars to increase the international feel of the city
  • Hold more international events that bring the city together

Please post your additional suggestions below.

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I see this thread has come

I see this thread has come alive again, so here's my two cents: (1) Shenzhen should be improved  for Chinese first and foreigners second, and (2) if Shenzhen is going to continue to benefit from the foreigners' presence here, they should work to make life a bit easier for foreigners living here.

To explain, I think a big source of pride in Shenzhen is the idea that it is an "international city," but, frankly, it isn't. Many of the posts above want to make it international by making it American or European, but if you really want an international city in Shenzhen, you really need to establish a foreigner-friendly Chinese city. Here, I mean "Chinese" in the sense of a true reflection of Chinese culture and history, not just full of Chinese people. 

A lot of the problems people have mentioned in posts seem to be a part of living in the Culture Desert, where rules are vague and no one's personal culture is really all that welcome. If someone can find a way to make it a city where all Chinese feel really welcome, really a part of the city, or really proud of the city, then a lot of the small problems foreigners find will take care of themselves. Kudos to folks like jayz123 and others who recognize there's no "culture problem" in SZ, but a "no-culture problem."

A lot of the "big problems" foreigners find may then genuinely turn out to be cultural differences, and those foreigners taking issue will just have to learn to suck it up. (I mean, really, some of the complaints here, I wonder if the same people posting went to Amsterdam and demanded that marijuana be outlawed!)

However, it's undeniable that Shenzhen does benefit economically from a foreign presence, and some steps have to be taken to make things a bit more manageable. It's all very well for people to suggest, "Why don't you learn Chinese then?," but really some legal things should be translated clearly and multi-lingually (into at the very least English, Arabic, Russian and Spanish--all of which are major trade languages here--with the original Chinese displayed and printable alongside the translation) and updated regularly.

Foreigners shouldn't be allowed to break the laws of China, but they should be able to read somewhere what those laws actually are. Instructions, directions and tips shouldn't be translated to make everything easy to do, but the bad official English translations providing instructions for things foreigners are required to do are usually old and, thus, incomplete or incorrect for now. I don't think foreigners should be given easy visas, for example, but they should at least be able to read online what things they need to take with them when applying for visas.

Making such instructions printable in a Chinese+foreign format would also help aid communication at the actual locations. This is important because the workers at many government institutions, even in the "foreigners" lines, just don't speak any foreign language or have enough flexibility to understand incorrect translations, and the time restraints for what they require don't always allow people enough time to learn the often specialized Chinese for each process. 24 hours, for example, is a really short time for a new-comer to China to learn whether he should lu, zai, deng, guahao, baoming, or zhuce with the local police within 24 hours.

In short, make Shenzhen a city where Chinese can be comfortable and happy, and make it easier for foreigners to learn how to be legal participants in that city.

Can not agree you more on

Can not agree you more on this!  :d

Bikes in the wrong lanes?

Bikes in the wrong lanes? Thats probably because its the safest place to be as the cars are everywhere apart from where they are supposed to be! Want to improve the area, start by sorting the APPALLING driving standards!
Went to Beijing and it was a pleasure there, drivers here are atrocious!!!

More bike lanes would be

More bike lanes would be great, but would people use them?? I drive in Shenzhen and there are many lanes on roads for bicycles yet it seems most people just stay outside the lane and ride on the road, also up near Shenzhen Wan, they all seem to go the wrong way into oncoming traffic!

I agree on the ID card point.

I agree on the ID card point. Rather than being expected to carry your passport with you everywhere ID cards should be issued as they are in HK. It cost around RMB 20 for a Chinese citizen's ID card so the government should just issue those along with the visa in the passport.

What I do not understand is

What I do not understand is why the Chinese are not learning from other countries.
In the UK we polluted our air, polluted our rivers so hardly anything lived in them, built roads that were not designed for future increase in traffic, didn't build sufficient in town parking etc etc etc, the list is endless.
All of these things are freely admitted and more than well documented. It cost an absolute fortune to put these things right but it has been done.
WHY haven't the Chinese learnt from these mistakes and gone straight to the solution stage, as opposed to go down the same old road we did and making the same mistakes! This country is a lot bigger and so the costs to remedy the problems will be so much more!

as i chinese who've been

as i chinese who've been living in SZ for 5 years, here's my input:
1) SZ is a chinese city, and 95% plus residents are chiense. it's understandble that foreigners will find some inconveniences here, like no english name for bus stops...same as i can;t expect london put on chinese bus stop names..
2) other than that, i agree most of u guys input, and i go with that. they are really awsome sugestions..
personally my biggest concern is the air pollution, you hardly can go out jogging in SZ, esp in autum and winter. to improve it sth need to be done on local coal power plant, and the millions of cars. for the first one, no easy solution as chins are not rich enough to burn oil for power. but for reducing the vehicles usages, defenitely a lot can be done:
1) add bike lanes and redue car lanes...(chinese love riding bickes ,and 1 car lanes can fit 6 bikes).
2) add bike(and car) parkings in the metra station.
3) charge the cars who enter the downtown area..
4) mass environment education campaign..chinese is desperately need this...

but again, we cna;t help wondering why above actions yet been done while it's obvious ?? SZ municiple governemnt banned electrical bikes for the sake of "face" project..becasue the officials regard bikes are a symbol of poverty and give bad face to!! seriously speacking, if the current political system not change in china, no hope in SZ and china...we need a governemnt by the people and for the people.

agreed with you.

agreed with you.

as a Chinese, i strongly

as a Chinese, i strongly agree with you. some people always want more,but they never try to overcome them by themselves. As you said, why don't learn Chinese and just remember some name of stops and roads or anything eles. since you have come to China and lived in China for a long time, why don't learn some basic Chinese and understand some Chinese culture first. don't always take your languages as the first language in other countries, because that language is not enough powerful and popular in this district. maybe when the day foreigners play a really important role in SZ comes, we will certainly consider building a better environment for our lovely foreigners.

I am foreigner as most of

I am foreigner as most of you, but if you watch Shenzhen by local people eyes, what they would say? How they would reply for all your complaints? Let me think about it...

- Why I cannot spit or pee on street? What this foreigner are so sensitive - they do not pee at all or what?
- Drivers: Why this foreigners just walk on green light, they do not watch cars at all and fight with us, what is wrong with them?
- Taxi-drivers: why all this damn foreigners do not speak in Chinese? They enter my car and I have no idea, where they want to go!
- Not only foreigners takes all best girls, but also they want longer visas and multiple entry? That is too much! Specially now in China we have more and more single man.
- We, Chinese should speak English with all foreigners? Did we go abroad or we are still in our country? China - speak Chinese, you cannot - then learn or use translator/dictionary.
- Why we cannot enter bus/metro first, in China so many people if we wait, bus/metro will run away.
- You want good English newspaper? Sorry, no matter Chinese, Spanish, German or English - if it is in China, it is always censored crap, so do not expect much.

It is just different culture people, try to understand it! You cannot just come here and demand from others - OBEY MY RULES, I AM FROM US OR EUROPE, MY RULES ARE BETTER. Be tolerant and just give up, do not fight with them, cannot change most habits.

No way

No way

I think the bus signs are

I think the bus signs are highly effective and that there's no need to translate every one into English. If you are coming to China to live, and you need to take the bus, then you should have the courtesy to learn the few characters of a few stops and you will be fine. I take the bus every day and find the current system great.

There are more Chinese in my hometown Vancouver then there are English speakers here in Shenzhen. Vancouver would never translate their signs to satisfy those who come into the country and care not to learn the language. Why should Shenzhen?

I have just got back from a

I have just got back from a visit to Beijing and have to say my opinion of Shekou has been shattered. Many things I blamed as being "the Chinese way" have been shot down! I found:

Shekou is DIRTY! Compared to even the outskirts of Beijing where things are so much neater, nicer and CLEANER.

People actually understand the function of a litter bin and USE it as opposed to the ground around it

You get hardly any of the disgusting sounding hocking and spitting (what you do see is mostly from people that are clearly countryside tourists)

95% of the drivers drive in a caring and considerate manner (the other 5% are probably just visitors from places like Shekou/Shenzhen!)

Taxis are CONSIDERABLY cheaper than here and don't drive as if they are taking part in "Death Race".

Restaurants have segregated smoking areas.

Traffic police are seen to be constantly on patrol and DOING something, regular police seen to be visible and acting according to circumstances... beggars, leaflet distributors, fly-posters and the like are clamped down on!

All in all a MUCH nicer environment where people and the area are more civilised, Shekou/Shenzhen could learn a LOT from Beijing!

The smoking problem is such a

The smoking problem is such a daily and continuous hassle and insult. Even western restaurants and bars don't give a damn !!
How will we make the Chinese care about it ?
Yes, there are smokefree places...McD, KFC and that's about it, and they allow smoking outdoors !!!
Any other Chinese city has clamped down, HK, SPore, taipei...why can SZ not clean up ??

SZ a world

SZ a world an escaped comedian...or actually you may be right, they do lead the world in many ways, like crime for example, pollution, bad traffic, kidnappings, begging, smoking all over, littering...not exactly what we need...

some restaurants have smoking

some restaurants have smoking and non-smoking zone, it's up to u

Any feedback on the meeting?

Any feedback on the meeting? Are they actually going to make any changes based on the feedback from us all?


I agree with the earlier

I agree with the earlier comments about e-channel for expat residents - great idea.

In addition to the many good suggestions I saw, I would like to add the Bao'an government really should do something concrete about cleaning up the black rivers. They are building a great city here in Bao'an with this most notable exception.

-- Tim

If I may summarize all inputs

If I may summarize all inputs for a better SZ just to make life easier for the admin;
1.Traffic culture is a disaster of unimaginable scale. Some measures to propose:
- New requirement for all driving license holders to get re-education on traffic rules as one of their license renewal process.
- Re-enforce fine system more strictly & indiscriminately (like in Singapore) for any unacceptable behaviour (spitting,smoking in public spaces,peeing/pooing in rubbish bin(baby = animal?),staring at people,argumenting on the phone,bumping at some1 without saying sorry,jumping a queue and so on and so on)
- Give more power to bus stop guards & traffic light blowers to levy a fine to these uncivilized citizen.

2. Promote a city-wide campaign on how to become civilized citizen of SZ. To be an international city, it must abhor to international standard of behaviour. Spitting, trashing and posting bills anywhere is the root of city's pollution problem.

3.Health service must be provided in other languages. Especially hospital must tell the truth about total cost of any treatment beforehand. As my wife experience it,a simple surgery she was told to cost only a couple of thousands RMB, ran to tens of thousand in the end of therapy. Publish actual price list & STOP the Rip-off!

4.Easier & fixed visa rules for foreigners regardless of their nationality. Don't change the rule as fast as green traffic light! We are here to contribute for the sake of SZ's economic growth, nothing else!

5.Teach land/houselords to pay tax on their rental income, so not to pass problem to tenants relating to rent reimbursement and registration to local Police regulation (which requires landlord's ID).

6.FREE media &internet from any kind of censorship! As to foreigners, Chinese media is another version of systemic brainwashing. So, let us know the real fact or risk losing our trust (to media).

7.Let our investments grow by lifting the 70-year limited period of property ownership. I do not know exactly property buying rule, but this very term of ownership has certainly put me off on buying one.

Well, I hope that helps in anyway!

Please improve the toilets at

Please improve the toilets at the Luohu bus station. It is smelly no doors and a real s**thouse.

I really like Shenzhen, but

I really like Shenzhen, but here are a few things I would improve if given the resources.


1) Would like rental/purchase real estate contracts to be offered in English as well as Chinese. This is a serious hassle for many expatriate friends I know in the city.

2) Many landlords do not pay tax on their rental incomes. This affects expatriates with housing subsidies from their companys because they must provide official fapiaos to their company's in order to be reimbursed. Since landlords don't want to report income, they refuse to provide this. SZ local government should do a better job of enforcing landlords to report this income. After all it's in their best interest since they will receive greater tax revenues.


1) Metro Line #4 has a train every 10 minutes. This is ridiculous. It should be made just as frequent as line #1.

2) Metro is good, but organization for entrance/exit booths where you flash your SZ tong lacks efficiency. There should be both entrance and exitway booths in each exitway. I often find myself having to make circles around the metro station in order to find the proper area to enter/exit the metro.


1) As others have mentioned, ID cards for expatriates with official residency here in Mainland China to cross into HK more easily would make life much easier.

2) Clean up the border crossing areas. In Huanggang for example, there's hundreds of pirate taxi drivers screaming at you trying to get you in their cars. This disorganization leaves a bad impression on newcomers to the city. The same is true of Luohu crossing.

I would like to suggest that

I would like to suggest that we need more free sports ground, I strongly believe in the motto 'a healthy mind for a healthy body', I think that the local government should develop more sports complexes, or playgrounds, and spread them all over the city.

is it too late to post? we

is it too late to post?

we need simple decals ( red or green ) indicating if buses go to the metro or not!

Make the visa process

Make the visa process friendly -

I had to go to HongKong to renew the working visa. Hope the city hall can streamline the process and make more friendly.

One word: Absinthe!!

One word: Absinthe!!

Shenzhen is a fantastic city

Shenzhen is a fantastic city and a leader in a great many ways in China and even the World.

Now traffic and signs can be problematic and I'm sure we'd all be keen to have these problems resolve themselves today, but I'm pretty sure they'll be solved in the not too distant future. I mean if I think about Shenzhen and the amount of change that we've seen in the past six years I'm blown away, and there's no reason that that drive for progress needs to stop.

As a leader in technology in China, I think it's very important that Shenzhen invest more in green technology, that can be applied in a dynamic and bussling metropolis such as our fair city. Ma Wan Power Plant is currently coal powered, which is cheap and efficient, but so bad for the environment, not to mention the adverse health effects that coal dust has on us...:(

If Shenzhen could manage to offset the amount of electricity produced by coal power with green technology we would become a leader in "green" not only in China but worldwide. We have all of the resources to do this including sun, wind, and sea so there is no reason that Shenzhen couldn't be 100% self sufficient in a resonable amount of time.

This is a rather ambitious way of looking at it and in reality the most effective way of being a more environmentally friendly city will be with the diverse population that makes up Shenzhen, locals, migrant workers, and foreigners. Awareness is a great tool for change, if the government just let people know how to be more energy efficient in a practical way and gave realistic examples and even alternatives for change, I think we could make a huge impact on our city and cut down our carbon footprint to a minimum.

For Visas, I have just got my

For Visas, I have just got my 9th passport from French consulate last week! Imagine how many times I got them stamped!

Shenzhen is a fantastic city

Shenzhen is a fantastic city and a leader in a great many ways in China and even the World.

Now traffic and signs can be problematic and I'm sure we'd all be keen to have these problems resolve themselves today, but I'm pretty sure they'll be solved in the not too distant future. I mean if I think about Shenzhen and the amount of change that we've seen in the past six years I'm blown away, and there's no reason that that drive for progress needs to stop.

As a leader in technology in China, I think it's very important that Shenzhen invest more in green technology, that can be applied in a dynamic and bussling metropolis such as our fair city. Ma Wan Power Plant is currently coal powered, which is cheap and efficient, but so bad for the environment, not to mention the adverse health effects that coal dust has on us...:(

If Shenzhen could manage to offset the amount of electricity produced by coal power with green technology we would become a leader in "green" not only in China but worldwide. We have all of the resources to do this including sun, wind, and sea so there is no reason that Shenzhen couldn't be 100% self sufficient in a resonable amount of time.

This is a rather ambitious way of looking at it and in reality the most effective way of being a more environmentally friendly city will be with the diverse population that makes up Shenzhen, locals, migrant workers, and foreigners. Awareness is a great tool for change, if the government just let people know how to be more energy efficient in a practical way and gave realistic examples and even alternatives for change, I think we could make a huge impact on our city and cut down our carbon footprint to a minimum.

People who pee and crap in

People who pee and crap in the middle of the street should be arrested...seriously arrested on the spot!!

Just in case you need more

Just in case you need more votes:
1. Ban Smoking in Restaurants
2. English public transport guides
3. improve hospital services with a good standard of English skills. Currently its such a daunting experience that you don't really know what's happening or going to happen. It's just much more comforting to go to Hong Kong.
4. Create events based around local holidays AND ADVERTISE THEM IN ENGLISH as well. Bring back the culture surrounding these events. ie. moon Lantern festival...wouldn't it be nice to get together at various locations around the city and light lanterns...and know what its about.
5. Introduce a local night market/snack market...maybe only on 1 night per week, where you can go and have a drink, wander around, try some snacks. They have done this really well in Zhuhai with their central walking street. they have nice little clean booths in the middle where you can sit, have a cheap beer (rmb10-15)or fruit juice. Relax and take in the atmosphere. Surely there's a place in Shenzhen city that can be used for this.
Good luck...hope to see some changes in Shenzhen as a result of all your efforts.

ban pets & smoking in all

ban pets & smoking in all restanrants.

I think there should be a lot

I think there should be a lot more Dj Greedyhippy gigs..
I mean honestly, only two a week..!
Hardly enough.

- Dj Greedyhippy

Dump the Shenzhen Daily and

Dump the Shenzhen Daily and start a real newspaper. The SZ Daily is the laughing stock of the city. It is, bar far, the worst English language newspaper I've seen anywhere. Our high school newspaper was better than it.

Keep neighborhoods in the

Keep neighborhoods in the style of the downtown part of Luohu around - one of the best things about Luohu is its human scale and walkability. The streets & neighborhoods there are pleasant compared to the super wide streets of Beijing or parts of Futian.

Like many, #1 on the list:

Like many, #1 on the list: Traffic, but broken down into many sections

#1: Traffic Laws
Have actual law enforcements do work. I lived in TaiChung, Taiwan in the past and for comparison, they actively search for illegally parked cars. The Taichung PD even brought in some US sized tow trucks so they have sufficient horsepower to pull the cars to impound lot and quickly return to their enforcement areas to do it over and over again.

#1: Traffic: Driving skills
Most Chinese drivers that I talked to, they didn't earn their driver license. They bought it. Yes, that's correct. Most of them have not even seen the driver's hand book. Hence, they don't understand "right-of-way" at intersections where small roads meets larger roads.

#1: Traffic: Signal light timing
Most signal lights are not timed accordingly. It's seeminly done randomly without taking into consideration the actual traffic requirement. Also, on the same stretch of road, the lights are not timed according to posted speeds. If it's done properly, traffic flow is smoothed out.

#1: Traffic: sidewalks. Why are many of the side walks 3 meter wide when 1.5 meter would work? It just allows many of the business to put chairs, signs, etc on it, blocking pedastrians, etc. Also, the area saved, even by eliminating some of the "green belt" area, you can put in about 2 more lanes per road, or put in actual parking spots.

#1: Traffic: Taxi drivers: Yes, many of them bought their license too. Same goes for bus drivers

#2: Hire some foreign city planner as a consultant, and just redo many of the lane markings, road planning, etc, then get to do some better zoning so you don't end up with a residential zone right next to a dirty industrial zone.

#3: Put up passive systems for fighting cars going the wrong direction. Put in those spike systems that shreds the tires if activated the wrong direction.

#4: +1 for ID card for border crossing. For me, recent regulation changes states that I cannot add additional pages to my passport after the 1st one. So that means I would need to spend more money to get new passports as they get filled up. No fun.

#5: No more police escort for government official, so they can actually see the real traffic condition.

#6: Enforce minimum speed law on highways. Hate it when a bread-van is cruising at 70kph in the leftlane... when the min-speed limit is 110 kph.

#7: Enforce the traffic regulation regarding illegal use of lights, IE having high beams on at inappropriate situations... Regulation even states there's a 2pt penalty on the driver license for this offense.

and on and on and on. (need to stop before I get carried away with this list...)

Above message was in reply to

Above message was in reply to Steve C.
When you hit reply below someone it just puts your new message at the bottom of the all thread! It does not quote the replied message. Needs to be changed!

Totally agree! Same here!

Totally agree! Same here! (except that I'm french)

Motor cycles off the

Motor cycles off the pavements, beggars off the streets, and unlicensed taxis off the roads (clear the touts from the airport and ferry exits).

ban a toilets for

ban a toilets for nonsmokers)))

Need to ask the city

Need to ask the city government to stop dumping raw waste and waste water into the canals and Shenzhen Bay by Sha He Xi Lu and Bin Hai Da Dao. In the summer the canals and Shenzhen Bay smell like a pooh pooh! Also, soon we will be able to walk across the raw waste to Hong Kong.

The best way to improve

The best way to improve Shenzhen is to educate the masses. You can add the best of the best to this city and in 5 years it'll look like trash.

1) Tight regulations on taxi drivers.
- Taxi authorities that ride around the city evaluating the quality of the taxis and drivers. Penalize the driver and the taxi company for inappropriate behavior or bad service.
- Convert all taxis to some sort of cleaner energy
- Ban the consumption of garlic and shallots by any taxi driver.
- Use the touchscreens in the taxis to allow the rifer to rate the taxi experience. Penalize the drivers fro poor service.

2) Public Safety (Police)
- Increase the presence of traffic police
- Traffic cameras are good
- A person standing on the side of the road taking pictures in questionable. No to mention dangerous.
- Regardless of the type of violation the police person should issue a ticket. People don't change unless it effects them. The delayed response of cameras systems teaches the violator he is capable of get away with his or her violation. Immediate repercussions are required.
- No more road side justice
- People love to argue and if they win once they believe this is the best way to deal with every situation.
- The excuse that there are too many people and the police can't mange that many people is a cop out.
- Police the Police....most police persons don't believe in some of the laws. Hence they wont act when they witness a violation. They may just watch and laugh. I've seen it too many times.
3) Look at the neighboring countries
- HK, Singapore, KL, Bangkok, Taipei....I'm sure they all had the same problems and figured out how to deal with they. It's basic human behavior.
- Chinese love TV....use it to teach people how to behave and to launch new initiatives. Ban the sitcoms that teach them that arguing or fighting is the best way to deal with situation.

There are lots of little things that can be done but most of them wont be appreciated. Focus on the stuff that everyone notices.

Maybe there could be some

Maybe there could be some kind of "volunteer" service amongst foreigners.
I would freely give my time in assisting local authorities in any way that would be of benefit to the area as a whole. Whilst my Chinese is pitiful, I am sure that there is something that could be made of time freely given by westerners that are calling this place home.
I am British and proud of it but I consider China my home now, and happily living here with my Chinese family, and as such I would willing participate in any way I could to the betterment of the area and the Chinese nation as a whole.

Def continue to allow Smoking

Def continue to allow Smoking in public spaces - Shenzhen is the last bastion of smokers - don't change that. Those who don't like it should stay in clean and safe Hong Kong.

Fix -

- Taxis at Fu Yong Ferry Terminal - get rid of pirates, I stopped going there two years ago due to the hassle of getting a cab.

- Continue to increase the number of international flights out of SZIA

- Stop blocking the internet esp sites I like to visit, censoring the news is fine but.... :)

- continue to encourage the use of english language, esp shouting HELLO at foreigners....we really like this.

As a native shenzhenr,

As a native shenzhenr, Shenzhen is not what it used to be. Many culture from the old time has gone. So I reckon, at least, we should grab a place or i don't know a ceremony to educate ppl the native shenzhen culture, such as the native snacks(Yummy) or langguages of Huka etc.
That's it. Goodspeed to ya

Enforce traffic

Enforce traffic regulations

Lift restriction on motorcycles, but enforce licencing and insurance

Construct multi-storey car parks to allow people to have somewhere to park so they don't have to block roads and footpaths

Construct "out of town" parking with free parking and bus transfer to city centre

Make town centres bus and taxi access only (see above)

Allow foreigners to import a vehicle for personal use (1 per 5 years or something similar, 1 car and 1 motorcycle)

Ease restrictions on the use of foreign credit cards within China

Allow 10 year visas for people married to Chinese national, with card allowing free movement between Hong Kong and China.

Allow dual nationality for children born of western / chinese parents whilst inside China

No smoking in public areas

Make littering and spitting an offence (same as Hong Kong and Singapore)

Make allowing your pet (or baby) to foul the walkway without then cleaning it up a fineable offence

Change the highway rules such that a vehicle is not always automatically at fault when involved in an accident involving a pedestrian. If it is the pedestrians fault then THEY should be liable.

Tighter controls on illegal taxi's

More "street fairs" to promote commercial sales

This list could go on forever!!!!

If you wish to discuss any more, please email...

The Shenzhen government

The Shenzhen government should tell China Merchants not to discriminate against expatriates living in the Shekou area, as they have been doing thru unjustifiably high housing and commercial rentals. People who have lived here a long time know that China Merchants were given the mandate to develop Shekou way back when Shenzhen SEZD was established. This has happened off the back of the Oil and Gas industry which early on, supported and propped up Shekou International School and so forth. However, in the process China Merchants have forgotten the part that expatriates played in the development of Shekou to what it is to-day. It is no secret that rentals in compounds such as Jingshan Vilas are inflated to cater for the expatriates. It is only the advent of the likes of Coastal Rose Garden, Peninsular, that exptriates now have some choice other than Jingshan. Commercial rentals likewise went thru the roof to the extent a lot of the food and beverage outlets are currently struggling. I was privy to sighting a commercial rental contract which was increased by 80% just last year - the landlord saw it fit to follow the trend (market rates) set by China Merchants. At the end of the day, the consumer is paying for this outrageous practice.

I am living over here for

I am living over here for past 5 yrs. I see lot of room to improve in shenzhen.

1. Green card application - Expats married to chinese national should be able to apply for chinese PR ( green card ) purely on the merit of marriage certificate without any pre requisites. currently one has to wait for 5 years of total stay in china along with chinese spouse. its not even 5 calendar years. if you are away from china for 1 week, so that means you are considered to stay 4 yrs 11 months 3 weeks. Hope such rigid rules are relaxed.

2. E-Channel for Work visa holder Expats - Get rid of immig chop on passport for Multiple entry Work visa status expat holders. - My second passport has almost become full, thanks to tonnes of chop while going to and fro HK. its just too cumbersome. must have E-Channel. Multiple entry visa holders should be able to apply for E-Channel card or some biometric card device. that will help a lot.

3. Smoking - Must ban smoking in public place and in restaurants especially. some of the good restaurants i have been to, during the peak hours, remind me of Gas chambers during WW II.

4. English education for kids to be cheaper. - All english schools in shenzhen are literally ripping the expats. I got two kids, affording a basic english school has become a challenge for me. Making me think to move out of China. Can govt. put some control over the fees and make it affordable. I am a manager in MNC but yet cannot afford it. those international schools in shenzhen are just made for those expat kids whose father or mother is CEO or CFO...its just way out of reach.

5. Improve hospital environment - Currently there are huge pressure on govt public hospital. even for common cold or cough, one has to wait at times for 1-2 hour. its just waste of man hours. imagine 100 people waiting in queue for atleast 1 hour for their turn to come. that means 100 hours. which means that in avg hospital in one hour, china loses 4 working days of labour. if we are able to tap that man hour resource, much more can be done :)... food for a thought !!

6. Hospital - English language - A big big challenge if you dont know chinese and god forbid you end up in a hospital. its a real trauma to get your issue through the doctor.

7. English emergency hotline service - for Police / ambulance / fire. Not sure if they have one currently.

8. One name for all roads / buildings. - Pls help to abolish two names for same things. Expat find it difficult to reach a destination if he knows only the english name. Unlike in europe, wherein one has to speak the same as in local language, here the english name should be the Pinyin format. eg. if i say to taxi person i need to go to Mixc.. he wont know where to go. but you say - wan shang cheng.. he would say ok.. get in...i have faced it a lot and learnt to know the chinese pinyin which you can pronounce same as chinese. that will help you anyday !!

Wouah we can clearly notice

Wouah we can clearly notice that traffic and parking enforcement are the most recurrent concerns!

Regarding Admin's

Regarding Admin's proposals:
(1) Subway signs and maps seems ok to me. Perhaps the exit signs that should be translated in English.
(2) Yes. Shenzhen has asked Hong Kong to build and run lot of hospitals in Shenzhen, I doubt they'll have enough manpower but it may be one step forward towards a better medical environment
(3) I don't think that this is a priority, the pace of opening up of foreign, restaurants, bars and clubs seems ok to me. We're very far from the Shenzhen of 8 years ago...
(4) Mmmm.

Here are my proposals.

- Pay a lot stricter control on traffic infringements of personal cars and public buses. Especially for reckless driving and wild parking on pedestrian walkways that prevents people and especially baby buggies to enjoy their walkways. Stricter control = more fines = more money for the government = pedestrians will feel better.
Make sure drivers understand that when there is a pedestrian cross and there are no traffic lights and that there is a blue sign with a black pedestrian crossing a white pedestrian cross, this MEANS that pedestrians have the PRIORITY over cars!
(Very similar to what Michael G. wrote earlier)

- They really should keep some of the old quarters of Shenzhen (xiasha, gangxia, etc...) and not build only new buidlings, otherwise Shenzhen will lose what's left of its already tiny soul.

- Protected bike lanes

- Bilingual bus maps at each bus stops

- Same as Mary Ann => Public Hygiene campaign. You can't have your baby pee in the bin in the middle of your Wallmart or pee right in the middle of the pedestrian walkway while the curb is not that far...

- Possibility to use your working VISA to cross Hong Kong border and not have to fill in the same forms again and again

And a good thing to say, that TerryKing said before: We expats love you Chinese! Otherwise we would not be there!

ENGLISH version of BUS

ENGLISH version of BUS SCHEDULE. Shenzhen is VERY hard to get around by bus. Combine Octopus card for Shenzhen METRO.

ENFORCE basic traffic laws.

REQUIRE that Taxis HAVE SEAT BELTS THAT WORK. Most are missing or buried... I will take an illegal taxi for any long ride, just to be safe.

ENFORCE that taxis in taxi line at station can not refuse to take you for a 15 quai ride..

TELL the Chinese people that we expats love them!!!

Introduce Electric Vehicles

Introduce Electric Vehicles and support renewable clean energy / electricity

Implement a electric transport system, with electric buses, charge points etc.... and of course, allow legal use of electric motorbikes and cars.

Allow installations of small wind-mills on buildings (providing power for common areas)

1: Affordable multi-storey

1: Affordable multi-storey carparks adjacent to MTR stations outside the central areas to encourage drivers to "park and ride"
2: Proper enforcement of traffic regulations; especially, penalties for drivers who run red lights and cause jams in junctions, impounding vehicles that use CDs and the like to avoid camera detection, recognition that vehicles with military plates are subject to traffic laws as well; the police to show no fear or favour
3: Proper sewage treatment to reduce pollution of rivers and harbour; all developers to be required to coordinate and ensure that there is one sewage treatment plant for every 25sq km of developed land; proper re-cycling programme to produce fresh water, fertiliser and other by-products of treated sewage
4: A light-rail system, sacrificing one road lane (as in Yuen Long - Tuen Mu in HK) or elevated (as in Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur) to link outliyng area and estates to MTR stations
5: Proper infrastructure planning before development begins (MTR ad road); too often developments are completed and populated before relief is built, putting a strain on the existing resources. No development of areas where the existing infrastructure cannot cope with its present load
6: APEC cards for all properly-documented residents, avoiding queues, form filling and excessive passport stamping at border crossings
7: Lok Ma Chau / HuangGang rail border crossing to remain open until midnight
8: The multi-story car park at HuangGang to be completed without further delay and connected by walkways to both the road and rail crossing buildings, easing road congestion at both places.
9: Foreigners able to apply for permanent residence, as many Chinese can do overseas

Better off ban smoking on all

Better off ban smoking on all public places!!

In addition, enforce traffic laws. Impose heavy fines for drivers running red lights, driving on the wrong side of the street and not stopping at cross walks. Tow illegal parked vehicles. (ie: the whole idea of being "civilized")

More traffic police and

More traffic police and better enforcement of the rules. Shenzhen may lead the world in cameras checking our every movement, but these are not a deterrent to stop the reckless scofflaws from making traffic a nightmare. How about some old fashioned law enforcement on the street.

Have more dedicated bike lanes that keep cyclists safe and riding on the right side of the road. More bike garages that are secure.

All signage for public transportation should be bi-lingual. Especially the bus system. Use bi-lingual maps.

Public Hygiene campaign! The authorities should tell the population that spitting and hawking is not polite and not suitable for a progressive city environment. Urination and defecation are NEVER appropriate in public places. That applies to your babies too! Yuck!

We can learn a lot from Hong Kong. It is more densely crowded than Shenzhen, but certain behaviour is just not accepted. Hong Kong residentss (and the rest of the world) had to be taught these basic ideas, but it works.

Accept International driver's

Accept International driver's licenses

Do away with the temporary residence permit

Open a few Hooters restaurants

Allow importing and exporting tax free, including my old cars...

Open an Embassy here

More fishing places

Many more English TV channels free

Uncensor the Internet

Have a few parades

More international sporting events

An F1 race track with drag strip

Better taxi and bus maintenance

Improve more social party to

Improve more social party to let younge people get to know more people and find their Mr./Mrs Right

This help to create happy families and good accompany, to reduce loneliness in a big city. And making more friends it gives people energy and good ideas to make a better place for all of us.

At popular tourist spots such

At popular tourist spots such as Happy Vally, Windows of the World, Splendid China, etc. have more multi-lingual information available to make it more user-friendly for foreign tourists when they visit.

Increase the number of western-style toilets at public tourist spots. Improve the hygiene of public toilet facilities.






ban smoking at restaurants

ban smoking at restaurants

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