China's megacities are not a new phenomenon. Towering residential blocks, sprawling lanes of highways, high-speed rail tracks and millions of residents standing shoulder to shoulder. There's Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Chongqing and Tianjin, and China has announced plans to create a new megalopolis that will connect three of the largest metropolitan cities in a region that's roughly the size of Kansas. Say hello to Jing-Jin-Ji.

Jing-Jin-Ji will connect Beijing, Tianjin and the Hebei Province to form a megalopolis to ease the demands of the growing population, according to the New York Times. Beijing is home to 21.5 million residents while Tianjin numbers 14.7 million. There's just not enough space and many people who live in Beijing commute more than three hours from the Hebei Province, but there's little comfort to be found.

Tianjin Tianjin is a megacity that would be integrated into the Jing-Jin-Ji province. Photo: Reuters

There are two parks that don't have enough space for the number of people who want to enjoy a weekend outdoors. There are not enough schools, drainage systems or even a movie theater. There are not enough buses to handle the number of commuters and even if you get on one, there's that three-hour ride to contend with.

China's President Xi Jinping has approved plans for Jing-Jin-Ji that will focus on adding infrastructure, light rail and economic roles for each of the areas. Beijing will be home to culture and technology and Tianjin will focus on manufacturing. Hebei's role is still undefined but could include smaller industries like textiles, according to the New York Times. High-speed rail will be crucial to this megalopolis as speed conquers distance and a three-hour commute could transform into a reasonable and comfortable 30 minutes.

Pearl River Delta The Peal River Delta megalopolis connects large cities like Shenzhen, Guangzhou and Macau. Pictured is the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau bridge under construction. Photo: Reuters

Jing-Jin-Ji wouldn't be the only massive megalopolis in China. The Economist's Intelligence Unit featured 13 sprawling metropolitan areas in a 2012 report. There's the Pearl River Delta, which features megacities Shenzen and Guangzhou; the Yangtze River Delta, which includes Shanghai; and the Chengyu megalopolis, which includes Chengdu and Chongqing.

Guangzhou The business area in Guangzhou. Photo: Reuters

Chongqing The megacity of Chongqing. Photo: Reuters

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