Organizers of Shanghai’s World Expo 2010 have been holding trial runs this week, before the official opening this Saturday, May 1st. About 70 percent of the nearly 200 participants participated in the trials, and visitors were already encountering long lines.
“Three big suggestions for fixes: space, time and mindset,” the Shanghai Morning Post said Wednesday in the closest China’s state-controlled media came to criticizing the Expo’s first seven-hour trial run, involving 200,000 people.
Visitors said they were disappointed with the food, the long lines and the limited number of pavilions open by the time they finally got through security checks and into the vast Expo park.
“Before I went, I was mentally prepared that it would be very crowded, but it turns out I underestimated,” said Ding Yangshen, a 64-year-old retired engineer, who visited the park with his wife using trial-run tickets from his government-worker son.
The Expo, which runs May 1-Oct. 31, showcases the latest in concepts for “Better City, Better Life” in pavilions from practically every country and many international organizations, cities and big corporations.
It’s expected that Shanghai’s World Expo 2010 will attract up to 100 million visitors, 95 percent of them Chinese. Shanghai has spent 400 billion yuan (58.6 billion US dollars) preparing for the Expo, according to state media – more than was spent on the Beijing Olympics. [via Boston and SacBee]