300 bus marts being built for remote communities across Beijing
By Ma Yue, Lin Rui
People's Daily app

A dead Beijing bus has been resurrected and reimagined as a mini greengrocers.

"I live nearby, so it's very convenient to shop here," one shopper was quoted as saying on Tuesday morning at the Liu Fang bus mart in Chaoyang district.

A clerk weighs eggs and lettuce at the bus mart. (Photo: People's Daily)

Big plans

Beijing government will build a network of at least 300 such "convenience bus stations" in three years within the Fifth Ring Road covering more than 90 percent of the urban population.

The bus marts' locations were thoroughly researched, according to a Beijing Public Transport Corporation press release.

They are to be placed near concentrated communities lacking in convenient community services, the release said.

The bus mart project is based on the principle of making up for what is lacking, the release said.

"To build a quarter-of-an-hour convenient life circle for locals," it reads.

Bus marts may even expand into catering, coffee and laundry vending services, the Beijing Daily reported.

The rent is reportedly low as the bus marts serve relatively remote communities.

"The goods are comparatively cheap here, with a discount of about 2 yuan per kilogram," another shopper was quoted as saying.

The bus mart offers shade and lighting. (Photo: People's Daily)


"Traditionally speaking, decommissioned buses can only be scrapped according to regulations," according to a Beijing Youth Daily report.

The refitted buses posed no threat to safety or sanitation, Beijing News reported.

"Some staff see to the regular cleaning to ensure the normal operation," a bus mart manager was quoted as saying in media reports.

Fresh strawberries on sale at a Beijing bus mart. (Photo: People's Daily)

Logistics, jobs

Fresh produce is delivered directly to the store through a supply chain controlled by the store management.

This arrangement saves on intermediate links and provides standardized management, improving supply efficiency and reducing overall operating costs, reports said.

Smart logistics and big data technology will add 3,000 new jobs to the daily service industry, the release said.

Previously Chengdu in Sichuan Province, Yongzhou in Hunan Province, Huizhou in Guangdong Province and Yichang in Hubei Province launched similar bus mart schemes.