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Tencent plans eSports and AI ‘future town’ for Minhang, China

Tencent League of Legends

Tencent and Super Generation Investment are planning an AI ‘future town’ – Shanghai International New Cultural and Creative eSports Centre – for Minhang, China.

Shine reports that, The Minhang District of Shanghai is planning the park in collaboration with Tencent Interactive Entertainment and Guangdong-based Super Generation Investment.

The park, the Shanghai International New Cultural and Creative eSports Centre, is planned for Hongqiao, a town in the Minhang District.  It has been described as the first “all-in-one professional eSports industrial park” in China and is slated to open in 2020.

The centre will comprise eight zones which will include eSports games; gaming R&D; new media; education; animation; film and television.  The park is expected to be home to around 100 eSports companies, both domestic and foreign.  It is touted to host around 10,000 visitors per day.  Part of the build will include a world-class professional eSports arena capable of hosting 6,000 spectators.  A further performance hall will have a 1,200 capacity.

A recent report from Goldman Sachs says that eSports like Fortnite will be as popular as the NFL, as video gaming moves into the mainstream with a projected 300 million viewers by 2022. Tencent has invested heavily in eSports, in a bid to develop a domestic RMB 100 billion ($14.6bn) esports business.

“The park will be a leading power in the nation’s eSports industry and will support local cultural and creative development,” said Wu Bin, deputy head of Minhang District. He explained that the construction of the park will follow three stages, the first being the eSports arena.

eSports and AI ‘future town’

Further construction will take place in western Minhang’s Maqiao town.  Wu says that an AI “future town” will be developed, including automated restaurants and robot clinics and schools.

AI and automation have been heralded as two strong emerging trends by WTTC.

Attractions technology trends also point to VR and AR, AI, and robots as being ones to watch. Japanese company HIS plans to have 100 robot hotels by 2021.

Minhang has long-standing ties with Taiwan and plans also  include the establishment of a Taiwan cultural and creative belt in Xinzhuang and Qibao, both towns in Minhang.  The hope is that, by 2020, Minhang will boast 23 cultural and creative parks alongside over 500 cultural and creative companies.

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