Sat, March 28, 2009
Lifestyle > Culture

Beijing opens temporary carnival theme park next to Bird's Nest

2009-03-28 01:46:32 GMT2009-03-28 09:46:32 (Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

BEIJING, March 28 (Xinhua) -- Visitors can view the National Stadium, also called the Bird's Nest, from a 45-meter-high mobile Ferris wheel -- Asia's tallest -- starting Saturday.

The Ferris wheel belongs to a carnival theme park located next to the stadium, which is scheduled to be open to the public until the end of October, China Daily reported Saturday.

The Ferris wheel was already spinning when the park opened to "internal personnel" on Friday.

The 46,000-square-meter theme park was slated to open to the public in February, but the date was postponed because some equipment failed to meet the Beijing Olympic Green Administration Committee's exceptionally strict safety requirements.

"All of our equipment has been checked and tested by the Beijing bureau of quality and technical supervision according to Olympic, rather than national, safety standards," site manager Liu Jian was quoted as saying.

"We finally gave the theme park the green light to operate after they obtained all of the safety and security permits we required on Thursday," Ding Jun, head of the Beijing Olympic Green Administration Committee's activity management division, said.

Not every body was pleased about the theme park's opening, including residents living across the street who voiced concerns about noise.

"Actually, I was woken up by the sound of the roller coaster this morning," Shi Hongxia, a Huizhongli resident in her 50s, said Friday.

"I can't imagine what it will be like when the park officially opens."

The site manager said the park had done its best to minimize noise. It moved all facilities with loud speakers away from the street.

Ding said the Beijing municipal environmental protection bureau will monitor the noise, and the Beijing Global Carnival Company, which runs the theme park, might have to compensate residents if it exceeds legal levels.

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