Guazhou (pink) within Jiuquan prefecture (yellow) within Gansu (grey)
|Country||People's Republic of China|
|Time zone||China Standard (UTC+8)|
Guazhou County (Chinese: 瓜州县; pinyin: Guāzhōu Xiàn), formerly (until 2006) Anxi County (安西县), is an administrative district in Gansu, the People's Republic of China. It is one of 58 counties of Gansu. It is part of the Jiuquan prefecture, with the city of the same name being the prefecture seat.
The town of Guazhou was previously called "Yuanquan (or occasionally Anxiyuanquan) and also Xincheng (New Town).
Emperor Wudi (140-87 BCE) had the Great Wall extended northwestward all the way to the Gate of Jade (Yumen Pass), the westernmost garrison town near Dunhuang. He then set up a system of garrisons all along this part of the Great Wall and put its headquarters in a town called Anxi (“Tranquil West”) and where the northern and southern Silk Routes historically diverged."
The ruins of Anxi remain along with Suoyang which is also not on the geographic databases but lies east of the small town of Tashi, about 30km south. Tashi is also known locally as Suoyangxiang (because it is the chief administrative town of Suoyang Township) while the fortress at Suoyang is also called Guazhou.
The county's location is ideally suited for wind farms, earning the nickname "world's wind warehouse". From the east the wind blows through a high, narrow valley formed by the Qilian and Beishan mountains, reaching 8.3 metres per second and energy density of 703 watts per cubic metre.
The mainline Lanxin Railway and branch line Dunhuang Railway intersect at Liugou Railway Station in the county. Xiaowan and Guazhou are the two other stations on the Dunhuang Railway located in the county.
- Liu (2010), p. 10.
- "Wind power growth in China's deserts ignored financial risks". The Guardian. May 14, 2010.
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