I set a quarter of CHINA LILY, the second part of my onion trilogy, in China, a couple of decades before Marco Polo visited. Onion trading and a lot more. And China will be part of the final portion of the trilogy, set in present times. I wonder if my characters will get lost in a city this size (won't every one be lost)? However, there will be a lot of onions being eaten.
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China Plans A New Mega City: Population, 42 MillionBy: Michele Travierso
An aerial view shows high-rise residential buildings in China's southern city of Shenzhen, which neighbours Hong Kong in this May 24, 2006 file photo.
A city the size of Switzerland? If China gets its way, yes.
Some ambitious apparatchiks in southern China want to combine 9 cities to create an urban area the size of New Jersey and Vermont combined.
The plan, announced in state media, would unite several existing cities in the prosperous Pearl River Delta region, including Guangzhou (12 million), Shenzhen (8.6 million), Dongguan (6.9 million) and six smaller cities. Together, these cities already account for about 10% of China's economy, the Telegraph notes.
(See photos of Shanghai's World Expo - the world's most expensive fair)
The Party's planners hope improved transport links and better infrastructure be beneficial to the population and to greater economic efficiencies . Other areas in China are facing a similar gravitational pull to merge together, notably Beijing with its southern smaller twin Tianjin, already joined by a high speed train link.
Rich neighbors Hong Kong and Macau will not join the super sprawl, but it's safe to assume that they'd like to have a say in larger regional themes, like pollution control.
The godzilla-like territory has yet to be named.