Friday, 3 October 2008

The Olympic petit morte (part two)

Well, whereas my earlier rant on the topic railed against the lack of sporting facilities that surround the prestigious university, this one is not an apology, but a clarification that there are facilities around – albeit they're kept very secret.

The Jiangwan Sports Centre 江湾体育中心 is hidden about 25 minutes walk from the main Handan Road campus, behind the goliath new Wanda shopping complex. I say it's hidden, as well as secret, as no-one I've asked about pools or gyms seemed to know of its existence, for the tip I have to thank Charlie as acting as a proxy between me and someone who does know of it, but whom I do not know.

This is a bit strange, as it's been around for some time. According to its website, it was originally the Shanghai Stadium 上海市体育场, which I'm pretty sure is somewhere else now. It was built in 1935, and in 1948 played host to the "Old China 7th National Games". It's now been rebuilt, and opened again in May 2008, which may account for noone knowing about it, but still.

If I had a camera (mine is still in a state of disrepair) I would have posted some pictures of it, but it's a brand spanking new-looking outdoor complex with a main stadium, indoor hall, 5-a-side football pitches, basketball, tennis, and - most importantly - an Olympic sized swimming pool.

With such amazing facilities, surely this is where all the post-Olympic sporting frenzy is going on. Not quite. It was empty. Dead. Deserted. Security guards on the gate, a few people hoovering the football pitches, and one old man smoking a cigarette in a traditional garden section, but other than that, noone.

Whether or not this is because of the week holiday that China is on at the moment, I do not know, the road outside seemed as busy and bustling as ever, but inside was a ghost town (a very clean ghost town I'll add).

This didn't bother me one bit though, so I headed into the swimming pool where there were a grand total of 5 swimmers. For anyone interested, here's some information for getting there/prices etc.

Address: Corner of Guohe and Zhengli Roads, Yangpu District. 国和路/政立路,杨浦区 (You can't miss it if you're on this corner).

Opening Times: 7am - 9pm

Tickets: Single entry 35 Yuan, One month 600 Yuan, 3 Month 1800 yuan, One Year 3000 Yuan.

Length: 50m.

Lanes: Not sure, none when I went, but it was empty, might change on time of day.

As with all swimming pools in shanghai, you need a City of Shanghai Health Card (You can get them for 5 kuai in any swimming pool)

Jiangwan Sports Centre (Chinese, apparently there is an English option but it doesn't work)

1 comment:

  1. Time to carry a camera. Swim on son, swim on.