People's Square is a large public square adjacent to Nanjing
Road in the Huangpu District
. People's Square is the site of Shanghai's municipal government headquarter building, and is used as the standard reference point for measurement of distance in the Shanghai municipality.
Prior to 1949 and the establishment of the People's Republic of China, what is now People's Square was a part of the horse racing course of Shanghai. After gambling and horse racing were banned by the new Communist government, a part of the race course became the People's Square, which included a large avenue and spectator stands for use during parades.Other parts of the race course still remain. The clubhouse buildings became the Shanghai Art Museum
, while part of the race track became People's Park
, a public park.