Beijing to invest heavily to support brick-and-mortar bookstores
Updated 14:26, 05-Jan-2019
Beijing will offer 100 million yuan (14.5 million U.S. dollars) to support the development of physical bookshops in 2019, the municipal government said.
A total of 151 bookshops received 50 million yuan in special funds in 2018, and the number of bookshops will be increased to 200 in the new year, as part of government efforts to promote reading, said Wang Yefei, head of the municipal press and publication administration.
The municipal government introduced an implementation guideline to promote the development of bookshops in July 2018. An estimated 126 new bookshops have opened in Beijing in 2018. Reading and other cultural activities have flourished in bookshops and libraries across the city, thanks to the special funds.

Reading fever

As a matter of fact, with the appearance of various well-decorated physical bookstores, reading is quietly becoming a very popular past time in Beijing.
A reader in Pageone bookstore located on Qianmen street. /VCG Photo

A reader in Pageone bookstore located on Qianmen street. /VCG Photo

The improvement of bookstore services is not only reflected in the decoration, but many bookstores have also opened a 24-hour service for readers.
Xinhua Bookstore as the largest country-wide bookstore chain brand in China is also open 24 hours a day.
Page One, a popular bookseller is one good example. Designed by the same architect as the "world's loneliest library" in Beidaihe, the Page One branch on Qianmen Street is as much an architectural attraction as a bookstore. It not only has 24-hour opening but it also provides comfortable reading areas and a coffee bar.
(With inputs from Xinhua)