30 giant Chinese infrastructure projects that are reshaping the world

A huge change is underway in China.



Over the next 10 years, the country plans to move 250 million people — the equivalent of Indonesia’s entire population — into the country’s rapidly-growing megacities.

To accommodate that enormous migration, the country has invested billions of dollars in massive infrastructure projects. Some are already complete, while others are still in the works.

From highways that span the continent, to the largest wind power base in the world, to enormously popular airports, to new cities in the desert, China is showing what it really means to do big things.

$4.5 BILLION: Wuhan Greenland Center is a 636-metre-tall (2,087 ft) 119-storey skyscraper currently under construction in Wuhan, China.The design has many energy saving features. The building’s height was increased to 636 metres (2,087 ft), and is expected to become the tallest building in China, surpassing Shanghai Tower. The expected completion date is 2018.


$110 MILLION: Scheduled for completion in September 2016, the Pingtang telescope will be the world’s second-largest radio telescope. Its dish measures 1,640 feet across.


$176 MILLION: Shanghai Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory conducts China’s major scientific projects. It’s the country’s most expensive research facility.


$200 MILLION: The Guangzhou Opera House is one of the three biggest theaters in China, designed by architect Zaha Hadid.


$473 MILLION: The Qinling Tunnel is the longest highway tunnel in China, measuring more than 11 miles underneath Zhongnan Mountain.


$532 MILLION: The Hainan power grid project will get a second underwater cable that runs between the southern island of Hainan to mainland China. It’s slated to be completed in 2017.


$717 MILLION: The Kashgar-Hotan Railway connects all the cities and towns of the southwestern Tarim Basin.


$760 MILLION: The building that’s home to China Central TV Headquarters is a loop of six horizontal and vertical sections, covering 1,551,837 feet.


$900 MILLION: The Tianhuangping hydroelectric project is the biggest in Asia and plays a vital role in supplying power to eastern China.


$1.3 BILLION: The Baltic Pearl Project is China’s largest foreign development project, consisting of residential and commercial properties outside St. Petersburg, Russia.


$1.7 BILLION: The Wuhan Tianxingzhou Yangtze River Bridge is a combined road and rail bridge that crosses the Yangtze River in the city of Wuhan.


$1.7 BILLION: The Nanjing Metro was completed in 2005 and is used by roughly 2 million people a day — that’s 717 million people a year.


$1.8 BILLION: The Shanghai Yangtze River Tunnel and Bridge is the fifth longest cable-stayed bridge in the world, at a length of nearly 16 miles.


$1.9 BILLION: The Chengdu Shuangliu Airport is the 4th-busiest airport in Mainland China. In 2015, it handled 42 million passengers.


$2.12 BILLION: The Wuhan Railway Station serves some of the world’s fastest trains, which sail along at 186 mph.


$2.2 BILLION: The Qinshan Nuclear Power Plant, Phase 2 was added to the original Qinshan plant in 2011. It has the most nuclear reactors of any site in the world.


$2.4 BILLION: At 128 stories and 2,078 feet tall, the Shanghai Tower is the tallest skyscraper in China. It’s the second tallest in the world.


$3.5 BILLION: The Beijing Capital International Airport is the largest single construction project in China and the sixth largest building in the world.


$4.5 BILLION: Nanhui New City, a planned city to be completed in 2020, will house almost 1 million people.


$6.3 BILLION: The Xiangjiaba Dam reached completion in 2014. Its generators produce a combined 30.7 Twh of energy annually.


$6.3 BILLION: The Beijing South Railway Station is the city’s largest station and one of the largest in all of Asia.


$6.5 BILLION: China is one of several countries that have signed a contract to re-construct the ancient “Silk Road” that links China and India to Europe.


$6.76 BILLION: Xiluodu Dam is the fourth tallest dam in the world and currently the second-largest power source for all of China.


$7.89 BILLION: The Su-Tong Yangtze River Bridge is the world’s second longest cable-stayed bridge, covering 3,600 feet between the cities of Nantong and Changshu.


$10.6 BILLION: The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge project will connect the two huge regions when it’s completed in 2017.


$12 BILLION: The Hainan Wenchang Space Center launch project was completed in 2014. It’s uniquely positioned to launch a spacecraft that will stay in orbit.


$14 BILLION: The Harbin–Dalian High-Speed Railway is the world’s first alpine high-speed railway that can operate at high latitudes and low temperatures.


$16 BILLION: The Jiaozhou Bay Bridge is the world’s longest cross-sea bridge, stretching nearly 26 miles — almost the length of a marathon.


$35 BILLION: The Beijing Shanghai High Speed Railway is the world’s longest high-speed rail project to be constructed in a single phase.

35-billion-the-beijing-shanghai-high-speed-railway-is-the-worlds-longest-high-speed-rail-project-to-be-constructed-in-a-single-phase$322 BILLION: By 2030, China plans to round up 42 million people from a nine-city region into one giant megacity in the Pearl River Delta. The population is expected to hit 80 million by the time construction ends.