URUMQI, July 15 (Xinhua) -- Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region invested 10.55 billion yuan (1.53 billion U.S. dollars) in highway construction in the first five months of this year, the regional transport department said.
Statistics from the department showed that the total length of highways in the region has exceeded 4,800 km so far. A total of 16 highway maintenance projects have also been completed.
The upgrade of the 561-km highway from Dushanzi in northern Xinjiang to Kuqa County in the south was completed on Tuesday. The highway, running through glaciers, forests, grasslands and various landforms, is one of China's most beautiful stretches of road.
To ensure better service for tourists, the region has implemented 53 projects to upgrade highway service areas, upgraded service facilities at 16 stations on the highways, and added 1,118 tourist signs.
The regional transport department plans to invest 52.63 billion yuan in highway construction in 2019, which includes constructing and renovating 841 km of the national and provincial highways, 12,000 km of roads in rural areas, and an additional 434 km of highways will be built.