Changchun is a very compact city, planned by the Japanese with a layout of open avenues and public squares. The city is developing its city layout in a long-term bid to alleviate pressure on limited land, aid economic development and absorb a rising population. According to a draft plan up until 2020, the downtown area will expand southwards to form a new city center around Changchun World Sculpture Park, Weixing Square and their outskirts, and the new development zone.
Changchun has three passenger rail stations, most trains only stop at the central Changchun Railway Station(simplified Chinese: 长春站; traditional Chinese: 長春站), where there are multiple daily departures to other northeast cities such as Jilin City, Harbin, Shenyang, and Dalian, as well as other major cities throughout the country such as Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. The Harbin–Dalian High-Speed Railway which runs through three provinces in northeastern China, has a stop in Changchun. The new Changchun West Railway Station, situated in the western end of urbanized area, is the station for the high-speed trains of the Harbin–Dalian High-Speed Railway.
Despite once having the most complex tram system in Northern China, there is now only one remaining route open, route 54 (see Changchun Tram). However, Changchun is notable for having China’s first urban light rail system, opened in 2002, which was developed from the existing tramway system. There is currently one line encompassing 14.6 km (9.1 mi) of track with plans to expand the system to an eventual 179 km (111 mi) of track.
Changchun is linked to the national highway network through the Changchun–Harbin Expressway, the Changchun–Jilin–Hunchun Expressway and the busiest section in the province, the Changchun–Jilin North Highway. This section connects the two biggest cities in Jilin and is the trunk line for the social and economic communication of the two cities.
Changchun is served by a comprehensive bus system—most buses (and the tram) charge 1 Yuan (元) per ride. Private automobiles are becoming very common on the city’s congested streets. Bicycles are relatively rare compared to other northeastern Chinese cities, but mopeds, as well as pedal are relatively common.
Changchun Longjia International Airport located 31.2 kilometres (19.4 miles) north-east of Changchun urban area. The airport’s construction began in 1998, and was intended to replace the operations of the older Changchun Dafangshen Airport, which was built in 1941. The airport opened for passenger service on August 27, 2005. The operation of the airport is shared by both Changchun and nearby Jilin City. The airport has scheduled flights to major cities including Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. There are also scheduled international flights between Changchun and overseas cities such as Bangkok, Osaka and Khabarovsk.