World Expo organiser to reorganise exhibits
Organisers of the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai are looking at reorganising and simplifying some of the event’s exhibits, in an effort to ease visitor flow and boost attendance figures. Hong Hao, Director General of the Bureau of Shanghai World Expo Coordination, told reporters this week that there were areas of the Expo site that needed rearranging, due to the popularity of certain pavilions.
Reported by the Shanghai Daily, Hong said that organisers hadn’t forecast that certain pavilions, such as Saudi Arabia and Japan, would attract such huge crowds. He said this has led to an imbalance, with other pavilions drawing fewer visitors.
Overcrowding shouldn’t be a problem for the Expo site. It has a daily capacity of 600,000 people, but the maximum daily attendance so far has been just 503,600, recorded on 29 May. In fact the event has only attracted 8.01 million visitors since it opened on 1 May. If this level of attendance is repeated of the remaining five months of the Expo, the event will attract close to 50 million visitors - a long way short of organisers’ target of 70 million attendees. 37 million tickets are reported to have been sold.
On the financial side, the organiser has reportedly earned CNY5 billion (US$731 million) thus far, mostly from ticket sales. This too needs to be pushed further if the Expo is to break even, with total construction and operations costing CNY10.6 billion.
To attract more guests, and ease traffic flow, the organiser is also urging the purchase of night tickets. The majority of guests are reported to be leaving the Expo after 5pm.