Expressways of Shanghai

Following the Middle Ring article I wrote today, let me talk a little bit about the expressways in Shanghai.

Expressways in Shangha, hand drawn by Jian Shuo Wang

Shanghai has a network of expressways. They are still building it, but it is many more than I came to Shanghai 10 years ago. They used the alphanumeric system to name the roads. It is A+number.

On numbering system, please refer to my article: Top Three Innovation that Failed in Shanghai. In 2004, many people cannot get used to it. Now, I believe it works much better than 2004. People complained that A11 is worse than “Huning” which means “Shanghai-Nanjing” Expressway. Now, after having more than 10 expressways, maybe numbering system starts to show more advantages than Chinese character naming system.

For the Chinese names of these roads, please refer to the second part of this article: Lupu Bridge Opens

A20 Road

Outer Ring. It runs besides Hongqiao Airport, and connects to Pudong Airport via A1. Many Axxx road starts from A20. Typically, areas outside A20 are considered suburb of Shanghai.

A30 Road

The Suburb Ring Road. Still under construction, but it is the out most ring in Shanghai.

A1 Road

Yinbing Avenue. It mainly serve one propose – connecting A20 to Pudong Airport. The name A1 implies it is a very important expressway, although it is the shortest one among all these expressways.

A2 Road

Hulu Expressway. It connects A20 and the Donghai Bridge and the New Harbor City

A4 Road

Xinfengjin Expressway. It runs from A20 (at Xinzhuang Interchange) to Fengjing. It goes cross the Huangpu River by Fengbu Bridge. The highlight of this road is the Shanghai Jiaotong University Minhang Campus, and the Zizhu High-Tech Park. Microsoft and Intel opened research centers there.

A5 Road

Jiajin Expressway, from A4 to Jiangsu. I haven’t try this road yet.


This is the major road to go to Hangzhou. It is also called Huhang Expressway. 2 hours down A8 is Hangzhou.

A9 Road

Unlike A8 and A11, it does not connect Shanghai to major nearby city. If you really want to know what is the other side of the road, it is Huzhou 湖州. If you go down this expressway long enough, you eventually arrive at Chongqing.

A11 Road

From Shanghai to Nanjing


Hujia Expressway. Jiading is a remote district of Shanghai. This expressway is also the first expressway in China.

These are the expressways I know – at least I can remember now. There are many other highways in Shanghai, but I either didn’t use it before, or still under construction.

2 thoughts on “Expressways of Shanghai

  1. Hi, I’m doing some research for my architecture diploma project on The Elevated Yan’an Road but find it difficult to get info on heights and measures. Do you know where I can find drawings, plans or sections of the elevated road?



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