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Central Street

  • Central Street (中央大街 Zhōngyāngdàjiē) is a pedestrian-only cobblestone street more than a kilometer (about a mile) long lined with stores, restaurants, old architecture dating from the Russian era, and malls. Central Street was part of the original town built by the Russians about 110 years ago. It was first called Chinese Street. You'll find some shops with Russian products, international restaurants, and two megamarkets, Walmart and the French Carrefour, that are located at the end of Central Street. The street is said to be the prettiest street in Harbin, and during the winter you can enjoy a dog sled or a horse sled ride. It is an easy shopping and dining highlight in the area.

    Harbin Central Europe-style touristarea-Central Avenue (Zhongyang Pedestrain Street)

    The central avenue with long history and profound cultural background, interprets in the city of Harbin perfectly and has witnessed the most brilliant European cultural development. A total of 18 million yuan(about$2.7 million) was invested in 2011 into three cultural industry projects including ice house, waxili Russian street and cultural street corner. Until now, over 100 businesses from home and abroad are located in the central avenue including Wanda plaza, Europlaza Shoppjing Mall, Kailai hotel and StarBucks. over 100 cultural and tourist events have been held here including ice sculpture festival, street music festival, music street, and booking reading street. The central avenue, integrated with tourism , business, leisure and recreation, has become the world-famous”Harbin Zhongyang European-style Tourism Zone”

    The central avenue measures1,450meters from Jingwei street in the south to the flood control monument in the north. There are 71 European –style buildings including 13 city-level protected street by the people’s government of Harbin Municipality.

    On the June 1st 1997, the pedestrain street was officially open to the public. Now the number of commercial stores has been over 700 here. We can find some specially shops or counters of international brands such as Armani, Dunhill, Louis Vuitton, Rolex and Ports. There are also many international chain brands, KFC and McDonald’s, mingling with some old buildings on this street. After some repaired protected buildings and some recreational space 2002, the street has been in a beautiful environment. The European-style buildings, European classical streetlight, more magnificent. The central avenue-with its special features-has become Harbin’s splendid scenery.

    In 1994, the city of Harbin gained its reputation as the famous historic and cultural city on national level. The central avenue is one of the most prominent streets in Harbin and an image and cultural brand of the whole city. In 2005, this street won the model prize of china habitat environment from the ministry of construction. In 2006, it got one of the title for the famous street of first china’s history and culture in the first appraising, which was hosted by Chinese culture newspaper, Chinese national culture promotion association and Chinese cultural relic newspaper at the approval of the ministry of culture and the state administration of cultural heritage in 2010.

    The Origin of the Central Avenue

    Just like Harbin city, the central avenue came into being with the construction of the railway from Binzhou line and Bin Sui line opened to traffic. before long, the construction of the railway from Harbin to Dalian made Harbin become hub of Chinese Eastern Railway. From then on, Harbin officially began to develop as an in powers, rich people and foreign residents came to Harbin for robbery, trade and commercial and trade and foreign settlers from shipping cargoes passageway. At urban population. Different cultures in different periods display on the street and impress us with architectural culture.

    In June 1898, thousands of railway workers from Shandong and Hebei province settled in vicinity of the central street when the Chinese eastern railway started to be built in Harbin. They made mud into wall and turned grass into sheds. Therefore this street owned its original name-China street. And in 1925, Chinese power of Harbin’s municipal management. Then during the period of cultural revolution in 1968, the central avenue again renamed Fangxiu street and regained the title of the central avenue until 1976. The old weather beaten street witnessed century of vicissitudes and vicissitudes and the rise and fall of Harbin as a witness to history.

    The square stones road on Zhongyang street

    In 1924, the central Avenue was floored with square stones according to a Russian engineer’s design and supervision. It is interesting that the size of these granite stones in the road is all 18cm long, 10cm wide, exactly the same shape and size as Russian bread. When you first visit here, you have never imagined this used to be a huge project. For some reasons, the railway workers had to do much more than we have expected, for example, digging 3 meters down out of loosened sandy soil and putting then into thick roadbed paved by many large rocks. It is said that one square stone was worth one dollars(sliver) which was much enough to buy one month’s food for one adult. It is really a road paved with gold. Now I am going to introduce the street’s architectural features.

    Architectural style

    The special historical conditions created a unique style of the city. The central avenue only took two or three decades to form an architectural style which cost the westerners for centuries. At the time, the central avenue was a famous street in far east.

    The distinct street contains the most influencing four architecture genres, covers the most charming literature phylogeny of 300 years of Europe, including renaissance style in 16th century , baroque style in 17th century, eclectic style in 18th century and art nouveau style in 19th century. And then the central avenue became a real” architecture art gallery” in China. For this reason, the central avenue become the cultural center of far east, Europe and America and was compared with regent street in London, the champs Elysees in Paris, the Unterden Linden in Berlin, Tokyo’s Ginza street, Nanjing Road in Shanghai, and avenue Victoria in Tianjin street.

    If you are walking on the central avenue, it seems you are entering into a foreign country. At the end of this avenue, we can see the flood control monument built by Harbin people commemorating heroes who fought again the devastating floods in 1957. Just because of this, the monument also became one of the landmark in Harbin. In 1997, government of Harbin Municipal appointed the street as a pedestrain street.

    Typical Architecture

    The most remarkable building along the central avenue in the modern hotel build in 1906.one as a large luxury hotel, this hotel now lists first-level protected building. It has a typical baroque style of the Neo-artistic period. The name of modern hotel means fashion and modern. It is a commercially creative masterpiece and the most luxurious hotels in the most prosperous street in Harbin. Joseph Keith, a Russian jewish, came to Harbin. At first, he opened a shop repairing clocks and watches. And soon he changed to deal in silverwares and benefited much. We can see how good the investment environment in Harbin in from the great achievement he made in just two years. So we really welcome everyone to invest in Harbin, and make a fortune.

    Modern hotel has all the facilities of modern hotel including well-equipped and well decorated suites, medium and small-sized meeting rooms in European palatial style. In the past few decades, this hotel has catered to many famous people, such as well-known Chinese writers Guo Moruo and Ding Ling, and renowned painter, Xu beijong. Those who have stayed here also include distinguished American celebrities such as Anna Louise Strong and Edgar Snow. What’s more, some inspiration, the orient express to Moscow. These movies have left people wonderful memories here.

    These are Zhongyang pedestrain street story.


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