The area was the scene of heavy fighting during the Battle of Shanghai.
As of 2015 many economic migrants from Chongming Island had moved to Baoshan District.
The Anti-Japanese War Memorial Park on Donglin Lu has a small museum with artifacts from the Second World War and a modern glass-and-steel pagoda.
The main campus of Shanghai University is located in Baoshan District. One of several schools in the district, Xing Zhi Middle School was founded by the famous educationalist from Nanjing, Tao Xingzhi. Shanghai Xingzhi High School is also located in the district.
Baoshan District is served by the Shanghai Metro. There are 3 lines from Baoshan to central Shanghai—Line 1, Line 3, and Line 7—which operate as subways, elevated rail, and light rail in different parts of the district. The 952B bus runs from Youyizhi Rd at Youyi Rd to People's Square in central Shanghai. The #5 tourist bus runs from Mudanjiang Rd to Jiangwan Town Station.
Ferries to Chongming Island operate from Wusong, Baoyang Rd, and Shidongkou. Ferries to Putuoshan are also available.
The district is home to Baosteel Group's original factory, still a major producer of iron and steel. Rovio Entertainment has its China offices in Baoshan District. The Shidongkou Power Station (石洞口发电厂) is located along the Yangtze.
Baoshan is currently served by three metro lines operated by Shanghai Metro: