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BEIJING – Beijing has locked down and tidied up for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meetings culminating in a leaders meeting Monday and Tuesday. Here are some ways life has changed for Beijingers:
WHERE'S MY PAPER?
Some Beijingers can't buy their morning paper from newsstands, or boiled eggs and pies from breakfast kiosks. Dozens of newsstands and kiosks have been removed from central roads to tidy up the city, the municipal government says.
TRAIN RIDES FOR CARS
Government workers have been given a six-day holiday and can take advantage of discount travel packages, because authorities are keen for people to leave the city to ease traffic congestion. Cargo trains are being deployed to whisk vacationers' cars out of Beijing without clogging up highways in and out of the capital.
LET'S NOT GO FLY A KITE
People who fly pigeons and kites near Beijing Capital International Airport face being detained as part of rules to ensure flight safety, according to notices from the city and aviation authorities. The zone extends 15 kilometers (9 miles) from the ends of the runways, according to the Shunyi district government. Members of the public who report infringements may receive an unspecified cash reward.
Residents should be able to breathe cleaner air because coal-burning boilers in some areas will be suspended and the pollution discharge of others will be cut by at least 30 percent, state media said. Some factories have temporarily closed and some demolitions will be halted to reduce dust. In all, authorities say, the total pollution discharge is expected to be cut by a third.
NOT YOUR DAY TO DRIVE
People can drive their cars only on alternate days, depending on whether their license plate is an odd or even number, to ease traffic and pollution. Beijing normally restricts a fifth of the municipality's vehicles from driving into central areas of the city every weekday. The banning of all delivery vehicles, including trucks, motorcycles and pedicabs, mean express mail items will be delayed and dairy producer Sanyuan says fresh milk won't be delivered to customers until next Thursday.
Police are asking dissidents and others to leave the city so they don't become the focus of media attention. They have detained Zhou Li, an activist who helps petitioners, citizens who submit their grievances to the central government, so she wouldn't organize any protests during APEC, according to a friend of Zhou's.