Firm to design new town for 110,000 people
Atkins, Britain’s largest engineering consultancy, will take part in the planning for a major new town in the eastern coastal city of Fuzhou, China.
The company signed a deal a strategic framework agreement Wednesday in Beijing with AVIC Joy Air Holdings, a subsidiary of Chinese state-owned aerospace and defence company Aviation Industry Corporation Of China.
The deal is part of a raft of agreements that were signed during a three-day visit by a British trade mission to China this week led by British Prime Minister David Cameron.
Atkin’s scope of work would be to draw up plans for a new town in Fuzhou, the provincial capital of Fujian province, a large-scale industrial park for aviation related activity, and a ten-kilometre tunnel and express way for connecting to Fuzhou city.
Investment is expected to be 15 billion yuan (HK$19.1 billion) initially, rising eventually to an expected 50 billion yuan (HK$63.7 billion).
The site location is in an environmentally sensitive area with low-lying land surrounded by rivers and watercourses.
In its planning, Atkins will be making allowance for the possibility of sub-tropical typhoons and heavy rainfall as well as making sure the new development is “future proof”, a requirement of China’s new National Green Urbanisation Strategy.
“The project will have a unique sense of identity – it aims to reconnect people who previously left the city for Taiwan and abroad,” an Atkins press release said.
Construction will start in early 2014 and on completion, the project would provide more than six million square metres of office, research and development, hotel, commercial and residential floor space, with housing for 110,000 people.
British engineering consultancies have been involved in urban planning projects in China over the years.
Atkins carried out planning projects such as the masterplan for Dongyang, a city in Zhejian province and landscaping for a waterfront in Mianyang in Sichuan province.
Rival Arups was involved in the integrated planning for Xiyong sub-centre, one of the six sub-centres established in the Sichuan provincial capital of Chongqing and the master planning for a new eco-city in Wanzhuang, located halfway between Beijing and Tianjin.
Mott MacDonald took part in the Hunan Urban Development Project for the Changsha-Zhuzhou-Xiangtan region of Hunan province.
Correction: The agreement was signed Monday 2 December 2013 and not Wednesday 4 December 2013 as previously reported.