Before Kublai Khan arrived in 1259, word reached him that Möngke had died. Kublai decided to keep the death of his brother secret and continued the attack on the Wuhan area, near the Yangtze. The present-day Wuying Pagoda was constructed at the end of the Song Dynasty between attacks by the Mongolian forces. Under the Mongol rulers (Yuan dynasty) (after 1301), the Wuchang prefecture, headquartered in the town, became the capital of Hubei province. Hankou, from the Ming to late Qing, was under the administration of the local government in Hanyang, although it was already one of the four major national markets (zh:四大名镇) of the Ming dynasty.
By the dawn of the 18th century, Hankou had become one of China's top four most important towns of trade. In the late 19th century, railroads were extended on a north–south axis through the city, making Wuhan an important transshipment point between rail and river traffic. Also during this period foreign powers extracted mercantile concessions, with the riverfront of Hankou being divided up into foreign-controlled merchant districts. These districts contained trading firm offices, warehouses, and docking facilities. The French had a concession in Hankou. During the Taiping Rebellion, the Wuhan area was controlled for many years by rebel forces and the Yellow Crane Tower, Xingfu Temple, Zhuodaoquan Temple and other buildings were repurposed or damaged. During the Second Opium War (known in the West as the Arrow War, 1856–1860), the government of the Qing dynasty was defeated by the western powers and signed the Treaties of Tianjin and the Convention of Peking, which stipulated eleven cities or regions (including Hankou) as trading ports. In December 1858, James Bruce, 8th Earl of Elgin, High Commissioner to China, led four warships up the Yangtze River in Wuhan to collect the information needed for opening the trading port in Wuhan.
The headquarters of Hubei Television is located in Wuchang District. Tortoise Mountain TV Tower is China's first self-developed TV tower, opened in 1986. The modern newspapers in Wuhan can be dated back to 1866, when Hankow Times, a newspaper in English, was founded. Before 1949, more than 50 newspapers and magazines were published by foreigners in Wuhan. Chao-wen Hsin-pao, founded by Ai Xiaomei in 1873, was the first Chinese newspaper to appear in Hankou (one of the cities that was merged into Wuhan). During the Northern Expedition era (1926–1928), journalism in Wuhan came to a climax; more than 120 newspapers and periodicals, including national newspapers such as Central Daily News and Republican Daily News, were founded or published during this time. Chutian Metropolis Daily and Wuhan Evening News are two major local commercial tabloid newspapers. Both of them have entered the list of 100 most widely circulated newspapers of the world.
In 1981, the Wuhan City Government commenced reconstruction of the Yellow Crane Tower at a new location, about 1 km (0.62 mi) from the original site, and it was completed in 1985. In 1957, the Wuhan Yangtze River Bridge was built with one trestle of the bridge on the site of the tower, which had been last destroyed in 1884.
In 1889, Zhang Zhidong was transferred from Viceroy of Liangguang (Guangdong and Guangxi provinces) to Viceroy of Huguang (Hunan and Hubei provinces). He governed the province for 18 years, until 1907. During this period, he elucidated the theory of "Chinese learning as the basis, Western learning for application," known as the ti-yong ideal. He set up many heavy industries, founded Hanyang Steel Plant, Daye Iron Mine, Pingxiang Coal Mine and Hubei Arsenal and set up local textile industries, boosting the flourishing modern industry in Wuhan. Meanwhile, he initiated education reform, opened dozens of modern educational organizations successively, such as Lianghu (Hunan and Hubei) Academy of Classical Learning, Civil General Institute, Military General Institute, Foreign Languages Institute and Lianghu (Hunan and Hubei) General Normal School, and selected a great many students for study overseas, which well promoted the development of China's modern education. Furthermore, he trained a modern military and organized a modern army including a zhen and a xie (both zhen and xie are military units in the Qing dynasty) in Hubei.
Originally known as the Hubei Arsenal, the Hanyang Arsenal was founded in 1891 by Qing official Zhang Zhidong, who diverted funds from the Nanyang Fleet in Guangdong to build the arsenal. It cost about 250,000 pounds sterling and was built in 4 years. On 23 April 1894, construction was completed and the arsenal, occupying some 40 acres (160,000 m ), could start production of small-caliber cannons. It built magazine-fed rifles, Gruson quick fire guns, and cartridges.
Wuhan University is another Project 985 and Class A Double First Class University, which was ranked 257th by QS World University Rankings and 285th by U.S. News; established in 1893, the old Wuhan University absorbed three other schools (two of them being its spin-offs since the 1950s) in 2000 to become a university with 36 schools in 6 faculties. Since the 1950s it has received international students from more than 109 countries.
As a city located at bank of Yangtze River, Wuhan has long history of ferry services. Modern ferry services were established in 1900 by steam boat. In 1937, a train ferry was established to transport train cars from Hankou to Wuchang. There are numbered stops around Wuhan where people can get on and off the ferry and there is a tourist ferry in the night.
Huazhong University of Science and Technology (HUST), located in the Optics Valley of China near East Lake, is a Project 985 and Class A Double First Class University. HUST manages Wuhan National Laboratories for Opto-electronics (WNLO), which is one of the five national laboratories in China. HUST is also one of four Chinese universities eligible to run the national laboratory and the national major science and technology infrastructure. Founded in 1953 as Huazhong Institute of Technology, it combined with three other universities (including former Tongji Medical University founded in 1907) in 2000 to form the new HUST, and has 42 schools and departments covering 12 comprehensive disciplines. HUST has 12 Fellows of Chinese Academy of Sciences and 17 Fellows of Chinese Academy of Engineering. U.S. News' 2019 U.S. News & World Report ranked HUST as 260th in the world, and 9th in China while QS World University Rankings has it ranked 400th in the world. More than 2,000 international students from 120 countries pursue degrees at HUST.
The Wuchang Uprising of October 1911, which overthrew the Qing dynasty, originated in Wuhan. Before the uprising, anti-Qing secret societies were active in Wuhan. In September 1911, the outbreak of the protests in Sichuan forced the Qing authorities to send part of the New Army garrisoned in Wuhan to suppress the rebellion. On September 14 the Literary Society (文學社) and the Progressive Association (共進會), two local revolutionary organizations in Hubei, set up joint headquarters in Wuchang and planned for an uprising. On the morning of October 9, a bomb at the office of the political arrangement exploded prematurely and alerted local authorities. The proclamation for the uprising, beadroll and the revolutionaries’ official seal fell into the hands of Rui Cheng, the governor-general of Hunan and Hubei, who demolished the uprising headquarters the same day and set out to arrest the revolutionaries listed in the beadroll. This forced the revolutionaries to launch the uprising earlier than planned.
By 1900, according to Collier's magazine, Hankau, the Yangtze River boom town, was "the St. Louis and Chicago of China." On October 10, 1911, Sun Yat-sen's followers launched the Wuchang Uprising, which led to the collapse of the Qing dynasty, as well as the establishment of the Chinese Republic.
As the revolution spread to other parts of the country, the Qing government concentrated loyalist military forces to suppress the uprising in Wuhan. From October 17 to December 1, the revolutionary army and local volunteers defended the city in the Battle of Yangxia against better armed and more numerous Qing forces commanded by Yuan Shikai. Huang Xing would arrive in Wuhan in early November to take command of the revolutionary army. After fierce fighting and heavy casualties, Qing forces seized Hankou and Hanyang. But Yuan agreed to halt the advance on Wuchang and participated in peace talks, which would eventually lead to the return of Sun Yat-sen from exile, founding of the Republic of China on January 1, 1912. Through the Wuchang Uprising, Wuhan is known as the birthplace of the Xinhai Revolution, named after the Xinhai year on the Chinese calendar. The city has several museums and memorials to the revolution and the thousands of martyrs who died defending the revolution.
In 1926, the Northern Expedition reached the Wuhan area and it was decided to merge Hankou, Wuchang and Hanyang into one city in order to make a new capital for Nationalist China. On January 1, 1927, the resulting city was proclaimed as '武漢' (the traditional Chinese characters for 'Wuhan'), which was later simplified as '武汉' (also 'Wuhan').
The metropolitan area comprises three parts—Wuchang, Hankou, and Hanyang—commonly called the "Three Towns of Wuhan" (hence the name "Wuhan", combining "Wu" from the first city and "Han" from the other two). The consolidation of these cities occurred in 1927 and Wuhan was thereby established. The three former cities face each other across the rivers and are linked by bridges, including one of the first modern bridges in China, known as the "First Bridge".
Wuhan is considered by some to be one of the potential sites of the pivotal Battle of the Red Cliffs, which stopped warlord Cao Cao's incursion into southern China at the end of the Eastern Han dynasty. Other historical events taking place in Wuhan include the Wuchang Uprising of 1911, which led to the downfall of the Qing dynasty and the establishment of the Republic of China. Wuhan was briefly the capital of China in 1927 under the left wing of the Kuomintang (KMT) government led by Wang Jingwei. The city later served as the wartime capital of China for ten months in 1937 during the Second Sino-Japanese War. A novel coronavirus that caused the COVID-19 pandemic was first identified in Wuhan in December 2019.
With the northern extension of the Northern Expedition, the center of the Great Revolution shifted from the Pearl River basin to the Yangtze River basin. On November 26, the Kuomintang Central Political Committee decided to move the capital from Guangzhou to Wuhan. In mid-December, most of the KMT central executive commissioners and national government commissioners arrived in Wuhan, set up the temporary joint conference of central executive commissioners and National Government commissioners, performed the top functions of central party headquarters and National Government, declared they would work in Wuhan on January 1, 1927, and decided to combine the towns of Wuchang, Hankou, and Hanyang into Wuhan City, called "Capital District". The national government was in the Nanyang Building in Hankou, while the central party headquarters and other organizations chose their locations in Hankou or Wuchang.
In June 1927, Stalin sent a telegram to the Communists in Wuhan, calling for the mobilization of an army of workers and peasants. This alarmed Wang Jingwei, who decided to break with the Communists and come to terms with Chiang Kai-shek. The Wuhan coup was a political shift made on July 15, 1927, by Wang Jingwei towards Chiang Kai-shek, and his Shanghai-based rival in the Kuomintang. The Wuhan Nationalist Government was established in Wuhan on February 21, 1927, and ended by August 19, 1927. After the end of the Northern Expedition, Hankou was elevated to a centrally-controlled municipality.
In March 1927, Mao Zedong appeared at the Third Plenum of the KMT Central Executive Committee in Wuhan, which sought to strip General Chiang of his power by appointing Wang Jingwei leader. The first phase of the Northern Expedition was interrupted by the political split in the Kuomintang following the formation of the Nanjing faction in April 1927 against the existing faction in Wuhan. Members of the Chinese Communist Party, who had survived the April 12 massacre, met at Wuhan and reelected Chen Duxiu (Ch'en Tu-hsiu) as the Party's Secretary General. The split was partially motivated by the purge of the Communists within the party, which marked the end of the First United Front, and Chiang Kai-shek briefly stepped down as the commander of the National Revolutionary Army.
Wuhan's climate is humid subtropical (Köppen Cfa) with abundant rainfall in summer and four distinctive seasons. Wuhan is known for its humid summers, when dewpoints can often reach 26 °C (79 °F) or more. Historically, along with Chongqing and Nanjing, Wuhan is referred to as one of the "Three Furnacelike Cities" along the Yangtze River for their hot summers. However, the climate data of recent years suggests that Wuhan is no longer among the top tier of "The hottest cities in summer" list, the New Four Furnacelike Cities are Chongqing, Fuzhou, Hangzhou, and Nanchang. Spring and autumn are generally mild, while winter is cool with quite low rainfall and occasional snow. The monthly 24-hour average temperature ranges from 4.0 °C (39.2 °F) in January to 29.1 °C (84.4 °F) in July. Annual precipitation totals just under 1,320 mm (52 in), the majority of which falls from April to July; the annual mean temperature is 17.13 °C (62.8 °F), the frost-free period lasts 211 to 272 days. With monthly possible sunshine percentage ranging from 31 percent in March to 59 percent in August, the city proper receives 1,865 hours of bright sunshine annually. Extreme low and high temperatures recorded are −18.1 °C (−1 °F) on 31 January 1977 and 39.7 °C (103 °F) on 27 July 2017 (unofficial record of 41.3 °C (106 °F) in 1934).
The high-water mark was reached on 19 August at Hankou, with the water level exceeding 16 m (53 ft) above normal. In 1936, when natural disaster struck Central China with widespread flooding affecting Hebei, Hunan, Jiangxi, Wuhan and Chongqing caused by the Yangtze and Huai Rivers bursting their banks, Ong Seok Kim, as Chairman of the Sitiawan Fundraising and Disaster Relief Committee, raised money and materials in support of the victims.
During the Second Sino-Japanese War and following the fall of Nanking in December 1937, Wuhan had become the provisional capital of China's Kuomintang government, and became another focal point of pitched air battles beginning in early 1938 between modern monoplane bomber and fighter aircraft of the Imperial Japanese forces and the Chinese Air Force, which included support from the Soviet Volunteer Group in both planes and personnel, as U.S. support in war materials waned. As the battle raged on through 1938, Wuhan and the surrounding region had become the site of the Battle of Wuhan. After being taken by the Japanese in late 1938, Wuhan became a major Japanese logistics center for operations in southern China.
In early October 1938, Japanese troops moved east and north in the outskirts of Wuhan. As a result, numerous companies and enterprises and large numbers of people had to withdraw from Wuhan to the west of Hubei and Sichuan. The KMT navy undertook the responsibility of defending the Yangtze River on patrol and covering the withdrawal. On October 24, while overseeing the waters of the Yangtze River near the town of Jinkou (Jiangxia District in Wuhan) in Wuchang, the KMT gunboat Zhongshan came up against six Japanese aircraft. Though two were eventually shot down, the Zhongshan sank with 25 casualties. Raised from the bottom of the Yangtze River in 1997, and restored at a local shipyard, the Zhongshan has been moved to a purpose-built museum in Wuhan's suburban Jiangxia District, which opened on September 26, 2011.
As a key center on the Yangtze, Wuhan was an important base for Japanese operations in China. On 18 December 1944, Wuhan was bombed by 77 American bombers that set off a firestorm that destroyed much of the city. For the next three days, Wuhan was bombed by the Americans, destroying all of the docks and warehouses of Wuhan, as well as the Japanese air bases in the city. The air raids killed thousands of Chinese civilians which American bombers did not know. "According to casualty statistics compiled by Hankou city in 1946, more than 20,000 were killed or injured in the December bombings of 1944."
Wuhan returned to Chinese control in September 1945. Administratively, Wuchang and Hanyang were initially combined into a new City of Wuchang, but in October 1946 were separated into the City of Wuchang (including Wuchang only) and the County of Hanyang. Hankou became a centrally controlled municipality in August 1947. Militarily, the Wuhan Forward Headquarters was established in Wuhan, headed by Bai Chongxi.
Wuhan University of Technology is another major national university in the area. Founded in the year 2000, it was merged from three major universities, Wuhan University of Technology (established in 1948), Wuhan Transportation University (established in 1946) and Wuhan Automotive Polytechnic University (established in 1958). Wuhan University of Technology is one of the leading Chinese universities accredited by the Ministry of Education and one of the universities constructed with priority by "State Project 211" for Chinese higher education institutions. The University has three main campuses located in the Wuchang District.
During the later stages of the Chinese Civil War, Bai sought to broker peace, proposing that the Communist Party could rule northern China while the Nationalist government retained southern China. This was rejected, and on 15 May 1949 Bai and the Wuhan garrison retreated from the city. People's Liberation Army troops entered Wuhan on the afternoon of Monday, May 16, 1949.
The Changjiang Water Resources Commission was reestablished in February 1950 with its headquarters in Wuhan. From June to September 1954, the Yangtze River Floods were a series of catastrophic floodings that occurred mostly in Hubei Province. Due to an unusually high volume of precipitation as well as an extraordinarily long rainy season in the middle stretch of the Yangtze River late in the spring of 1954, the river started to rise above its usual level in around late June. In 1969, a large stone monument was erected in the riverside park in Hankou honoring the heroic deeds in fighting the 1954 Yangtze River floods.
The project of building the Wuhan Yangtze River Bridge, also known as the First Yangtze River Bridge, was regarded as one of the key projects during the first five-year plan. On October 25, 1955, construction began on the bridge proper. The same day in 1957, the whole project was completed and an opening-to-traffic ceremony was held on October 15. The First Yangtze River Bridge united the Beijing–Hankou Railway with the Guangdong–Hankou Railway into the Beijing–Guangzhou Railway, making Wuhan a 'thoroughfare to nine provinces' (九省通衢) in name and in fact.
Wuhan has eleven bridges and one tunnel across the Yangtze River. The Wuhan Yangtze River Bridge, also called the First Bridge, was built over the Yangtze in 1957, carrying a railroad directly across the river between hills known as Snake Hill and Turtle Hill. Before this bridge was built it could take up to an entire day to barge railcars across. Including its approaches, it is 5,511 feet (1,680 m) long, and it accommodates both a double-track railway on a lower deck and a four-lane roadway above. It was built with the assistance of advisers from the Soviet Union.
Founded in 1958, the Wuhan Branch of Chinese Academy of Sciences is one of the twelve national branches of CAS. It is composed of 9 independent organizations, including the headquarters at Xiaohongshan, Wuchang. It has had a staff of 3,900, among which 8 are CAS fellows, and one is a Chinese Academy of Engineering fellow. As of 2013, the achievements gained by WHB had won 23 National Awards and 778 Provincial Awards. Wuhan Research Institute of Post and Telecommunications (now known as FiberHome Technologies Group) is the national center for optical communication research in China, and is where the first optical fiber in the country was produced.
In July 1967, civil strife struck the city in the Wuhan Incident ("July 20th Incident"), an armed conflict between two hostile groups who were fighting for control over the city at the height of the Cultural Revolution.
The city has been subject to devastating floods, which are now supposed to be controlled by the ambitious Three Gorges Dam, a project which was completed in 2008. The 2008 Chinese winter storms damaged water supply equipment in Wuhan: up to 100,000 people were out of running water when several water pipes burst, cutting the supply to local households. The 2010 Northern Hemisphere summer heat wave hit Wuhan on July 3. In the 2010 China floods, the Han River at Wuhan experienced its worst flooding in twenty years, as officials continued sandbagging efforts along the Han and Yangtze Rivers in the city and checked reservoirs. In the 2011 China floods, Wuhan was flooded, with parts of the city losing power. In the 2016 China floods, Wuhan saw 570 mm (22 in) of rainfall during the first week of July, surpassing the record that fell on the city in 1991. A red alert for heavy rainfall was issued on 2 July, the same day that eight people died after a 15-meter (49 ft) section of a 2 m (6.6 ft) tall wall collapsed on top of them. The city's subway system, the Wuhan Metro was partially submerged as was the main railway station. At least 14 city residents were killed, one was missing, and more than 80,000 were relocated.
Wuhan Economic and Technological Development Zone is a national level industrial zone incorporated in 1993. Its current zone size is about 10–25 square km and it plans to expand to 25–50 square km. Industries encouraged in Wuhan Economic and Technological Development Zone include Auto-mobile Production/Assembly, Biotechnology/Pharmaceuticals, Chemicals Production and Processing, Food/Beverage Processing, Heavy Industry, and Telecommunications Equipment.
The Second Bridge, a cable-stayed bridge built of prestressed concrete, has a central span of 400 meters (1,300 feet); it is 4,678 meters (15,348 feet) in length (including 1,877 meters (6,158 feet) of the main bridge) and 26.5 to 33.5 meters (86.9 to 109.9 feet) in width. Its main bridgeheads are 90 meters (300 feet) high each, pulling 392 thick slanting cables together in the shape of double fans so that the central span of the bridge is well poised on the piers and the bridge's stability and vibration resistance are ensured. With six lanes on the deck, the bridge is designed to handle the daily passage of 50,000 motor vehicles. The bridge was completed in 1995.
Opened in April 1995 to substitute for the old Hankou Wangjiadun Airport and Nanhu Airport as the major airport of Wuhan, Wuhan Tianhe International Airport is one of the busiest airports in central China. It is located in Wuhan's suburban Huangpi District 26 kilometers (16 mi) north of Wuhan city proper. The extension of Line 2 of Wuhan Metro to Tianhe Airport opened on 28 December 2016. It has also been selected as China's fourth international hub airport after Beijing Capital International Airport, Shanghai-Pudong and Guangzhou Baiyun. A second terminal was completed in March 2008, having been started in February 2005 with an investment of CNY 3.372 billion. International flights to neighboring Asian countries have also been enhanced, including direct flights to Tokyo and Nagoya, Japan. Terminal 3 has been available for service since early 2017.
The Third Wuhan Yangtze River Bridge, also called Baishazhou Bridge, was completed in September 2000. Located 8.6 kilometers (5.3 miles) southwest of the First Bridge, construction of Baishazhou Bridge started in 1997. With an investment of over 1.4 billion yuan (about US$170,000,000), the bridge, which is 3,586 meters (11,765 feet) long and 26.5 meters (86.9 feet) wide, has six lanes and has a capacity of 50,000 vehicles a day. The bridge is expected to serve as a major passage for the future Wuhan Ring Road, greatly easing the city's traffic and aiding local economic development.
The Yellow Crane Tower, historically one of the tallest buildings in Wuhan, is considered one of the Four Great Towers of China and was destroyed twelve times, both by warfare and by fire. The tower is classified as an AAAAA scenic area by the China National Tourism Administration. At 438 meters (1,437 ft) in height, the Wuhan Center skyscraper, the tallest structure in Wuhan and in Central China, is the eighth tallest structure in China. The Minsheng Bank Building, the second tallest structure in Wuhan, was the tallest building in Wuhan when it was completed in 2007. It retained the title until Wuhan Center surpassed it in 2014. Wuhan World Trade Tower is a 273-meter (896 foot) tall skyscraper located in Wuhan. It became the tallest building in Wuhan after its completion in 1998. However, it was surpassed by the Minsheng Bank Building in 2007.
In the wake of the United States bombing of the Chinese embassy in Belgrade on May 7, 1999, protests broke out throughout China, including in Wuhan.
Wuhan Export Processing Zone was established in 2000. It is located in Wuhan Economic and Technology Development Zone, planned to cover 2.7 square kilometers (1.0 square mile) of land. The first 0.7-square-kilometer (0.3-square-mile) area has already been created.
On June 22, 2000, a Wuhan Airlines flight from Enshi to Wuhan was forced to circle for 30 minutes due to thunderstorms. The aircraft eventually crashed on the banks of Han River in Hanyang District, all on-board perished (there were varying accounts of number of crews and passengers). In addition, the crash also killed 7 people on the ground.
Wuhan Metro is a rapid transit system serving the city of Wuhan. Owned and operated by Wuhan Metro Group Co., Ltd., the network now includes 9 lines, 228 stations, and 339 km (211 mi) of route length. Line 1, the first line in the system, opened on 28 July 2004, which made Wuhan became the seventh city in mainland China with rapid transit system, after Beijing, Tianjin, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Changchun, and Dalian. Line 2 opened on 28 December 2012 and is the first underground metro line crossing the Yangtze River. With 1.22 billion annual passengers in 2019, Wuhan Metro is the sixth-busiest rapid transit system in mainland China. There are a number of lines or sections under construction. The government of Wuhan City promised the citizens that at least two lines or sections open every year. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the entire network was out of service from 23 January to 27 March 2020.
In 2006, construction began on the new Wuhan Railway Station with 11 platforms, located on the northeastern outskirts of the city. In December 2009, the station was opened, as China unveiled its second high-speed train with scheduled runs from Guangzhou to Wuhan. Billed as the fastest train in the world, it can reach a speed of 394 km/h (244.82 mph). The travel time between the two cities has been reduced from ten and a half hours to just three. The rail service has been extended north to Beijing.
As of May 2011 , the Wuhan and Hangzhou Public Bicycle bike-share systems in China were the largest in the world, with around 90,000 and 60,000 bicycles respectively. In 2012 the Wuhan and Hangzhou Public Bicycle programs in China are the largest in the world, with around 90,000 and 60,000 bicycles respectively. China has seen a rise in private "dockless" bike shares with fleets that dwarf systems in size outside China. Initially, a number of traditional (third generation) docked public bike systems operated by local municipal governments opened across China, with the largest ones being in Wuhan and Hangzhou. The first was introduced in Beijing in 2007. However, third generation bike sharing is not considered successful for the majority cities in China. Bike sharing in Beijing virtually stopped and it also has encountered difficulties in Shanghai and Wuhan.
The Yangluo Bridge carries Wuhan's Ring Road across the Yangtze in the city's eastern suburbs (connecting the Hongshan District with the Xinzhou District). It was opened on December 26, 2007.
Biolake is an industrial base established in 2008 in the Optics Valley of China. Located in East Lake New Technology Development Zone of Wuhan, Biolake covers 15 km (5.8 sq mi), and has six parks including Bio-innovation Park, Bio-pharma Park, Bio-agriculture Park, Bio-manufacturing Park, Medical Device Park and Medical Health Park, to accommodate both research activities and living.
The current U.S. Consul General, the Honorable Mr. Jamie Fouss, was posted to Wuhan in August 2017. The office of the U.S. Consulate General, Central China (located in Wuhan) celebrated its official opening on November 20, 2008 and is the first new American consulate in China in over 20 years. The consulate is currently scheduled to offer visa and citizen services in the Fall of 2018.
With the opening of the Hefei-Wuhan high-speed railway on April 1, 2009, Wuhan became served by high-speed trains with Hefei, Nanjing, and Shanghai; several trains a day now connect the city with Shanghai, getting there in under 6 hours. As of early 2010, most of these express trains leave from the Hankou Railway Station.
The Wuhan Tianxingzhou Yangtze River Bridge crosses the Yangtze in the northeastern part of the city, downstream of the Second bridge. It is named after Tianxing Island (Tianxingzhou), above which it crosses the river. Built at a cost of 11 billion yuan, the 4,657-meter cable suspension bridge was opened on December 26, 2009, in time for the opening of the Wuhan Railway Station. It is a combined road and rail bridge, and carries the Wuhan–Guangzhou High-Speed Railway across the river.
Currently, ferry services are provided by the Wuhan Ferry Company. In 2010, the company bought 10 new ships to replace the ones that had been in service for 29 years.
Since 1890, the steel industry has been the backbone of Wuhan's industry. In 2010, automobile industry exceeded GDP for Wuhan Iron and Steel Corporation (WISCO) steel for the first time. There are 5 car manufacturers, including Dongfeng Honda, Citroen, Shanghai GM, DFM Passenger Vehicle and Dongfeng Renault. Dongfeng-Citroen Automobile Co., Ltd is headquartered in the city.
The sub-provincial city of Wuhan currently comprises 13 districts. As of the Sixth Census of China in 2010, the 13 districts comprised 160 township-level divisions including 156 subdistricts, 3 towns, 1 townships.
Wuhan is the most populous city in Central China and among the most populous in China. In the Sixth Census of China in 2010, Wuhan's built-up area made of 8 out of 10 urban districts (all but Xinzhou and Hannan not yet conurbated) was home to 8,821,658 inhabitants. As of 2015 , the city of Wuhan had an estimated population of 10,607,700 people.
Chinese protesters organized boycotts of the French-owned retail chain Carrefour in major Chinese cities including Kunming, Hefei and Wuhan, accusing the French nation of pro-secessionist conspiracy and anti-Chinese racism. The BBC reported that hundreds of people demonstrated in Beijing, Wuhan, Hefei, Kunming and Qingdao. On May 19, 2011, Fang Binxing, the Principal of Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications (also known as "Father of China's Great Fire Wall" ) was hit on the chest by a shoe thrown at him by a Huazhong University of Science and Technology student who calls herself "hanjunyi" (寒君依, or 小湖北) while Fang was giving a lecture at Wuhan University.
Wuhan has a professional football team, Wuhan Zall F.C., that plays in the Chinese Super League. Xinhua Road Sport Center, the team's home stadium, with a capacity of 32,137, is located in the heart of the city next to Zhongshan Park. For the 2013 season, Wuhan Zall was promoted to the top-tier league of Chinese football, Chinese Super League, and relocated its home to Wuhan Sports Center Stadium, a modern stadium with 54,357 seats located in the suburbs of the city. However, the team did not play well in the ensuing season and was demoted back to China League One as the 2013 season ended. For financial and transportation reasons, the team moved back to Xinhua Road Sport Center in 2014.
In 2015, Japan and Russia announced their intentions to establish consular offices in Wuhan.
Construction work is carried out on several lines of the new Wuhan Metropolitan Area Intercity Railway, which will eventually connect Wuhan's three main rail terminals with several stations throughout the city's outer areas and farther suburbs, as well as with the nearby cities of Xianning, Huangshi, Huanggang, and Xiaogan. The first line of the system, the one to Xianning, opened for passenger operations at the end of 2013. The line to Xiaogen opened on 1 December 2016 and it was extended with the opening of the Wuhan–Shiyan high-speed railway to Shiyan on 29 November 2019.
According to a survey published in 2017, 79.2% of the population of Wuhan are either irreligious or practice worship of gods and ancestors; among these 0.9% are Taoists. Among other religious doctrines, 14.7% of the population adheres to Buddhism, 2.9% to Protestantism, 0.3% to Catholicism and 1.6% to Islam, and 1.6% of the population adheres to unspecified other religions.
While Wuhan has been a traditional manufacturing hub for decades, it is also one of the areas promoting modern industrial changes in China. Wuhan consists of three national development zones, four scientific and technological development parks, over 350 research institutes, 1,656 high tech enterprises, numerous enterprise incubators and investments from 230 Fortune Global 500 firms. It produced GDP of US$22.4 billion in 2018. The Dongfeng Motor Corporation, an automobile manufacturer, is headquartered in Wuhan. The city is home to multiple notable institutes of higher education, including Wuhan University and the Huazhong University of Science and Technology. In 2017, Wuhan was designated as a Creative City by UNESCO, in the field of design. Wuhan is classified as a Beta world city by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network.
Trams were brought to the streets of Wuhan on July 28, 2017 with the first line (Auto-city T1 Line) opened that day. The trams under construction or planning in Wuhan are:
Hannan Municipal Airport is an municipal airport that serves Hannan District. It is the biggest airport in China that only handles general aviation, and the biggest municipal airport in Hubei Province. Caidian Municipal Airport is an under-construction airport which will serve Caidian District. The airport began construction on 1 December 2017.
The Wuhan Greenland Center is a planned 636-meter (2,087 ft), 126-floor mixed-use skyscraper currently under construction and scheduled for completion in 2019. If completed as planned, it will be among the world's tallest structures, and one of the world's tallest buildings by occupiable floor height. The Phoenix Towers are proposed supertall skyscrapers planned for construction in Wuhan. At 1 kilometer (3,300 ft) high, the towers would also be among the tallest structures in the world when completed.
In early July 2019, there were protests against plans for a new incinerator in Xinzhou District.
The encompassing metropolitan area was estimated by the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) to have, as of 2010 , a population of 19 million. As of November 2019, urban development status considering both spatial and socioeconomic processes has been examined using Night Time Lighting data and land cover data as proxies; it showed Wuhan's high concentration of socioeconomic activities compared to its urban spatial development.
In December 2019, an epidemic of a new coronavirus disease began in Wuhan. The disease, which became known as coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), spread and developed into the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic. Wuhan and other Hubei cities were placed under lockdown for nearly three months to contain the disease. On April 8, 2020, the Wuhan lockdown officially came to an end after no new domestic cases were reported in Hubei province.