Construction work has restarted on a huge theme park project and a number of venues for the 2022 Asian Games in China, in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. Developers have been given the green light to start building again on the third and fourth phases of the $750 million Mall of China development. Work was suspended because of coronavirus, but construction can now resume after inspections were carried out to ensure Covid-19 prevention requirements were met.
The park will showcase 14 of Nickelodeon’s properties, including SpongeBob SquarePants, Dora the Explorer, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Paw Patrol, across 29 attractions. The Ninja Turtles ride is expected to set four world records for an indoor roller coaster – the longest track, highest drop, most inversions and fastest maximum speed. It will also feature the first tilting drop-tower attraction in Asia.
The developers are expected to invest more than $750 million in the mall, of which the theme park will occupy about 92,000 square feet. The approximately 1.5 million-square-foot Mall of China complex is part of a mixed-use development that will also include a residential enclave of about 40,000 residential units, an international K-12 school and an international hospital. The total area will cost over $4.2 billion to develop. Located about 15 minutes from Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport, the Mall of China broke ground in September 2016 and is designed to not only serve the local area but also be a major tourism draw for Central China. The park was expected to open in December 2020 but this now looks likely to be delayed.
Asian Games venues
Meanwhile, construction work has also resumed on stadiums and other venues being built for the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou, after a lengthy halt caused by the coronavirus epidemic. Officials from the organising committee said that construction has resumed on 28 of the 40 projects being built for the Hangzhou Asian Games, officials from Zhejiang province in eastern China said.
Hangzhou is the capital of Zhejiang province and will host the Olympic Council of Asia’s 19th Asian Games from September 10-25, 2022. It will be the third time China has organised the Asian Games, following Beijing 1990 and Guangzhou 2010. Over 10,000 athletes will take part in 40 sports during the 19th Asian Games. As the biggest multi-sport games after the Olympic Games, the Asian Games is the most prestigious event organised by the Olympic Council of Asia.
The Asian Games are held every four years. They follow the sports programme of the Olympic Games, with swimming and athletics as the core sports, as well as featuring disciplines which reflect the diverse sporting culture of the Asian continent such as sepaktakraw (South East Asia), kabaddi (South Asia) and wushu (EastAsia). The inaugural Asian Games took place in New Delhi, India, in 1951 with 11 countries competing in six sports.