After almost two months of total lockdown, Shanghai is gradually reopening. On this page, Sixth Tone will bring you regular updates on the city as we're seeing it.

May 25, 2022
It was drizzling Tuesday afternoon, but that didn’t dampen the spirits of some Pudong New Area residents from venturing to the mall. After all, they’ve been locked in for weeks.
The upscale Taikoo Li Qiantan is the first such venue to reopen in the city’s financial district after nearly two months of lockdown. It opened its doors for visitors Friday.
This week, many residential compounds in Pudong have been gradually relaxing restrictions and allowing people to step outside for a limited time — though days and duration vary from one community to another. They can walk, bike, or use their moped — not their cars though.
A few supermarkets and convenience stores are open, along with the Taikoo Li Qiantan mall.
At Taikoo Li, the three entries into the shopping mall were not as busy as expected. Before entering, visitors scanned their health QR code and had their body temperature taken. They were then given a sticker, indicating they were good to go.
“It’s not busy on weekdays,” said a security guard. “But we received many visitors last weekend. Around 40 businesses in the mall have resumed operations —most of them are coffee shops, restaurants, and a few designer stores.”
A burger shop prepares takeaway food for clients at Taikoo Li Qiantan mall, Shanghai, May 24, 2022. Ni Dandan/Sixth Tone
Most visitors walked around the mall and its outdoors space, taking photos and filming their first trip to a mall in weeks. Children in raincoats and boots splashed the rainwater in the puddles.
Inside, most shops kept visitors a few meters away from their entrance. The shops also had QR codes for people to scan and place their orders online.
A few people waited outside a designer store that was only allowing two to three customers each time. Some were waiting for their takeouts, as the smell of freshly brewed coffee wafted in the air.
“All of our pizzas are sold out,” said Hao Jie, a member of staff at a restaurant serving Western food, adding they ran out of stock in just three hours after opening on Tuesday.
A receptionist at a restaurant serving cuisine from the southwestern Guizhou province said they were experiencing a staff shortage in the face of an increased demand for food. They were also having difficulties sourcing necessary ingredients for certain dishes.
“But the reopening is a good start,” said the woman.
The mall has banned indoor dining but there is an outdoor space that allows visitors to eat or drink. A handful of people lingered there despite the drizzle, and all had their masks on.
While many had come to the mall for the first time since it shut in late March, some hadn’t left at all.
A sanitation worker named Wang Xiafeng, along with some 30 others, have spent the entire lockdown inside Taikoo Li Qiantan. They lived in a designated area on the second floor and carried out their daily tasks despite there not being any visitors.
“I chose to stay because I want to be fully paid,” she said. “For people like me, who are far away from home, the main purpose of life is to make money. Luckily, my income hasn’t been impacted.”
— Ni Dandan; editor: Bibek Bhandari.
(Header image: Visitors scan QR codes to enter Taikoo Li Qiantan mall in Shanghai, May 21, 2022. VCG)

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