Anyone interested in moving to Shanghai better not dawdle. The Chinese economic hub currently has a population of 24.2 million, and authorities just put a plan in place to cap the permanent population at 25 million, reports Reuters. The idea behind the newly adopted master plan through 2035 is to curb the maladies common to major cities such as environmental pollution, gridlock traffic, and a decline in the quality of public services such as medical care and education. The State Council, which refers to all of the above as "big city disease," also will limit the amount of land made available for development in the coming years.
A research fellow at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences predicts that the poor will bear the brunt of the new population limit the most because the government will begin tearing down cheap housing now in existence, per the Global Times. Imposing such a limit, he warns, is "unpractical and against the social development trend." China similarly hopes to cap the population of Beijing at 23 million by 2020, notes the Guardian. Already, plans were in the works to move government offices out of Beijing to a new city being built about 50 miles to the south.