The Chinese bullet train

“Arguably the world’s fastest,” says the Chinese news agency Xinhua:

The Wuhan-Guangzhou high-speed railway, arguably the world’s fastest train journey at a speed of 350 km/h, started operation on Saturday.

Two passenger trains rolled out of Wuhan Railway Station and Guangzhou North Railway Station at about 9 am and reached their respective terminals within three hours, compared with the previous 10-hour journey.

The service between Wuhan, capital of central Hubei province, and Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong province and a business hub in the southern region, started a trial run on Dec 9 and hit a top speed of 394.2 km/h.

I am not one to sneer at 217 mph, with gusts up to 240.

But here’s the zinger:

China will build 42 high-speed passenger rail lines with a total length of 13,000 km in the next three years, covering more than 90 percent of the population.

By 2012, trips from Beijing to most provincial capitals would only take between one and eight hours, said Wang Yongping, the Railway Ministry spokesman.

Right now, it takes 23 hours to get from Beijing to Hong Kong.

And it’s taking ten years to replace 6 km of freeway in Oklahoma City. Who’s for sending ODOT to Beijing for a couple of years?


  1. Charles Pergiel »

    29 December 2009 · 7:55 pm

    Commies make (Republicans / Democrats – choose one) look bad?

  2. CGHill »

    29 December 2009 · 8:06 pm

    I look at it this way: ODOT is a bureaucracy, and let’s face it, Communists understand bureaucracy on a fundamental level. The fact that they can conscript the citizenry is purely a bonus.

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