Pingwang the Four-Waters-In-One Town
The town of Pingwang is built by water, nourished by water and graced by water. It has long been known as a place where the sky and water stretch to the horizon (天光水色，一望皆平). The section of the Grand Canal within the town splits into three canals that run all the way down to the Qiantang River in Zhejiang Province. The three canals, which are the Grand Canal itself, the New Canal and the Ditang River, intersect the Taipu River, forming a magnificent scene of “four-waters-in-one”. This scene, as well as the eight landmarks of Yingdou Lake, has made Pingwang a “prosperous town” filled with “merchant ships” and “stores and shops” in the era of water transportation. Professor Ruan Yisan once commented that Pingwang is “one of the historical towns by the Grand Canal featuring its well-preserved canals and its close spatial relation with the canals”. Pingwang, the four-waters-in-one town, has over the years made its efforts to integrate the old and the new, to connect between land and water resources, and to create a harmonious system of the town, the waters, the lands, and the villages and their residents. By creating a “prosperous fair by the Grand Canal” featuring “a bridge, a temple, a road and a lake”, the town’s Canal Culture Tourist Attraction presents a new scene of canal-side daily life. And the town’s Yunpuwan Demonstration Zone, featuring “a tower, a post station, a cultural relic belt, an academy, and a time-honored brand", integrates the “four-waters-in-one” elements and the canal culture into its economic development, urban construction and people’s livelihood services, depicting a modern version of the painting “The Prosperous Grand Canal”.