APA China Services


APA provides international partners with various professional services. APA-led training sessions come in a variety of formats based on individual needs. They range from a few days to a few weeks, on a specific topic or a variety of topics. Training may involve a combination of classroom experience, travel to the United States, and hands-on demonstrations.

APA has hosted a series of teaching activities in China and the U.S. in places such as Shanghai, Nanjing, Chongqing, Shenzhen, Tianjin, New York, Boston, Denver, Washington, D.C, San Francisco, and Portland. Through this type of training, Chinese mayors, planners, and other participants are exposed to the American city planning system, the structure of U.S cities, all levels of government functions, and practical tools for plan implementation.

In 2000, APA helped Chinese mayors set up a Mayors Forum to promote communication among mayors and city planners. Since 2003, APA has hosted over 12 delegations, or more than 250 members, of mayors, officials, and planners from Jiangsu Province, Shanghai, Chongqing, Wuhan, and other regions in China.

In November 1999, APA and the Regional Planning Association cooperated in proposing three plans for Shanghai Pudong Huamu Area. Ten day-long training and discussion sessions followed. The participants were Pudong Lu Jiazui, WaiGaoqiao, and GoldenBridge Land development companies, as well as nearly 200 people from the Shanghai city planning department and real estate companies.

Learn more about training for China mayors and planners


APA also organizes workshops for Chinese and American professional planners or government officials. In December 2002, five professional planners were invited to Tianjin to develop and conduct a workshop with the Tianjin government and local planners on the topic of Tianjin Coastline Planning. Experts from U.S. coastal cities shared their experiences of success with Tianjin's planners.

Since 2001, APA has held workshops on Planning in China. Attendees include APA members and other interested officials and professionals. In these workshops, government officials and planning experts from China have joined in analysis and discussion with U.S. planning experts on urbanization issues in China and specific cases. Planning in China workshops were held in Denver in 2003, in Washington, D.C. in 2004, and in San Francisco in 2005.


Since 1978, and especially since 1996, APA has regularly sent experts to China, and APA planning experts have made official trips to China every year. Meanwhile, APA has hosted many delegations of planners and government officials from China, including those from the Ministry of Construction, the Ministry of Land and Natural Resources, the China Mayors Association, and the China Academy of Urban Planning.

Delegation members come from Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Chongqing, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Hebei, Shandong, and other cities. The exchange programs enable Chinese and American planning experts to carry out on-the-spot studies in both countries. Some attendees are high-ranking government officials who have worked in government for years and have long experience in planning; others are younger planners seeking experience and new ideas. Both benefited from the exchange programs. In November 1999, the Nanjing Planning Bureau visited six cities in the U.S., including San Francisco, Chicago, New York, and Philadelphia.

Training participants attended lectures, made on-site visits, and took an exam to test their understanding of course contents. Certificates were awarded to qualified participants at conclusion of the training. Through these on-site visits to American and Chinese cities, experts furthered their knowledge of the city planning philosophy in both countries and studied successes and failures.