On Friday I had the opportunity to tour both sides of the sprawling, 5.28 square km Expo 2010 site. I’ve been down there before, but only to individual pavilions on discrete trips, and seen it from above, but I must admit that I never really appreciated the shear size of it until I had the chance to walk around some of the sites. It’s massive – easily the largest construction site I’ve ever visited (and that includes the insta-cities that sometimes sprout out of the Chinese countryside). I’m trying to get a good fix on the number of laborers working on the various pavilions, and if and when I do, I’ll add the figure to this post. But for now, this image offers a small hint: it shows a line-up of workers, post-lunch, standing at the security gate, awaiting re-admittance to the Puxi-side of the grounds (one of the group pavilions is in the background).
The security lines are interesting. Workers and visitors are required to wave an ID card (like this one) over a reader, and then ushered through a metal detector, and their belongings, through an X-ray machine. The security – at least when I was there – was administered by Chinese military in camouflage!
Anyway, I’ll have much more to say about this visit, and a few of the pavilions, after the weekend.