daily menu » rate the banner | guess the city | one on oneforums map | privacy policy | DMCA | news magazine

Go Back   SkyscraperCity > Asian Forums > Asian Skyscraper Forums > East Asia > Mainland China Forums 中国大陆论坛 > Infrastructure/基础设施



Reply

 
Thread Tools Rating: Thread Rating: 2 votes, 5.00 average.
Old October 27th, 2009, 05:01 AM   #1
pearl_river
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 241
Likes (Received): 0

High Speed Rail and the Future of Chinese Society

What is most amazing about the high speed rail network is how it will change the sociological landscape of China. People will not be afraid to go to university or take employment in a different corner of the country. The obliteration of people's sense of geographically restricted comfort will have incredible societal/cultural consequences.


"By making travel available to ever-larger numbers of people, they changed not only distances, but individuals' perceptions of their own limitations, shifting "people's mental maps of the land mass in which they lived," says Colin Divall, a professor of railway history at University of York in the U.K.


Newsweek

http://www.newsweek.com/id/219416

For decades, rail travel in China meant an arduous overnighter in a crowded East German–designed train, riding along a rickety old track. Now China is undergoing a rail revolution. Over the next three years, the government will pour some $300 billion into its railways, expanding its network by 20,000 kilometers, including 13,000 kilometers of track designed for high-speed trains capable of traveling up to 350kph. Result: China, a nation long defined by the vastness of its geography, is getting, much, much smaller.
My Take
Follow your favorite NEWSWEEK columnists

Customize the Newsweek homepage to feature the latest word from your favorite columnists.

Already, the journey from Beijing to Taiyuan, the capital of Shanxi province, has been slashed from eight hours to three. Shortly before the Olympics last year, the 120km trip from Beijing to Tianjin was cut from almost an hour to just 27 minutes. In the next few years, a train journey from Wuhan to Guangzhou, halfway across the country, will shrink from 10 to three hours. The trip from Shanghai to Beijing, which currently clocks in at 10 grueling hours—and twice that, not so long ago—will be cut to just four, making train travel between China's two most important cities a viable competitor to air for the first time. Similarly, a trip from the capital to the southern manufacturing powerhouse of Guangzhou—more or less the entire length of the nation—will take just eight hours, compared with 20 before and more than a day and a half by bus.

In many ways, China's rail revolution is comparable to the building and opening of America's transcontinental railway in the 19th century or, more recently, to the opening of the U.S. interstate highway system in the 1950s and 1960s. In their own ways, each of those infrastructure projects opened up the United States for development, exploration, and trade. By making travel available to ever-larger numbers of people, they changed not only distances, but individuals' perceptions of their own limitations, shifting "people's mental maps of the land mass in which they lived," says Colin Divall, a professor of railway history at University of York in the U.K.

The advent of high-speed trains is likely to have even greater implications for China, given its larger territory, population, and history of regional unrest. By improving connections, they may help spread economic development more evenly around the country, helping Beijing to bind the nation together and strengthen its hold over the provinces, and decreasing the likelihood that China's internal divisions might one day lead it to fragmenting into "warring states," as some worst-case forecasts have predicted. In particular, the leadership hopes that its call for the nation's talents and industry to "go west" to China's poorer provinces may become easier once western regions become less remote, thanks to rail. Thus the gaps in wealth, status—even dialect—that now divide countryside and city, the more urbanized east and the mostly rural west may be narrowed, advancing Beijing's vision of a more "harmonious society."

Bullet trains are already expanding the definition of a day trip and could help transform isolated backwaters like the inland city of Xian into booming heartland hubs. With traffic already clogging China's expanding network of highways, bullet trains could ease the snarls while opening up travel to the millions of Chinese still unable to afford a car, or a plane ticket. In general, high-speed rail is likely to be just as fast as air travel, at half the price. By shrinking people's sense of the scale of the nation, fast trains may also help stimulate the creativity and new thinking that China needs for the next stage of its economic development. Xie Weida, a professor at the Institute of Railways and Urban Mass Transport at Shanghai's Tongji University, argues that "transport will have a big impact on every aspect of the entire life of our society," stimulating development "not just in the field of economics, but in politics and culture too."

Already, government investment has created something of an economic miniboom. At the railway station in Suzhou—the old Yangtze delta city north of Shanghai famous for its canals and ornamental gardens—teams of construction workers now spend their days suspended precariously from a latticework of girders high above the track. Soon, a brand-new glass-and-steel terminal will rise here, and the crumbling old 1950s station, with its few platforms, will be consigned to history. Guangzhou, Shanghai, and other cities are following suit, building shiny new stations to service the fast new trains. Authorities are so confident about the market that they've invested tens of millions of dollars in localizing production of bullet trains, with 85 percent of the parts for trains in the new Beijing-Shanghai line expected to be manufactured domestically.

Far bigger economic effects are down the line. The train tracks are helping to spur consumer spending, with Beijing residents traveling as far as 120 kilometers to shop in places like Tianjin, where prices are lower. The $8.50 one-way trip takes less than 30 minutes, attracting many middle-class passengers who see the bus—which takes three times as long—as a nonstarter. Beijing's campaign to promote development across regions—like the Yangtse River Delta around Shanghai, or the Pearl River Delta from Guangzhou to Hong Kong—gets a huge boost from the fact that it will soon be possible to traverse these regions in minutes. High-speed rail will cut the trip from Shanghai to Nanjing from what was originally four hours to just 75 minutes. The city of Wenzhou in southeastern Zhejiang—home to many of China's biggest private enterprises, including fashion brands like Meters Bonwe and shoemakers like Aokang—has long been hindered by its relative isolation in a mountainous coastal area. This month it opened high-speed rail tracks connecting it for the first time to Ningbo, a major port, and to the neighboring province of Fujian, an important hub for Taiwanese investment. The link, which will ultimately extend south to Hong Kong, is expected to further stimulate Wenzhou's legendary entrepreneurial spirit, which has seen it move rapidly from small family workshops to major textile and electronics manufacturing, as well as becoming the source of much of the real-estate investment around China.
pearl_river no está en línea   Reply With Quote

Sponsored Links
 
Old October 27th, 2009, 06:37 AM   #2
Severiano
我是個老外!!! 給我啤酒!!!
 
Severiano's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Tampa, Shanghai. 坦帕、上海
Posts: 1,247
Likes (Received): 278

How can the four hour high speed train ride from Beijing to Shanghai compete with Air travel. A flight takes just a little over an hour and is cheaper. If you look on elong or ctrip, you can get a flight from Shanghai to Beijing for cheaper than you can get the 10 hour train now. The 10 hour train is around 550 yuan. Some flights to Beijing are as low as 350. The High-Speed train will probably be more than the 10 hour train.
Also many people say that the reason to take a train is because the stations are more centrally located than airports, but Shanghai's HSR station is right next to the airport!!!!And Beijing's South Station isn't that close to stuff either. Just saying.
Severiano no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 27th, 2009, 06:45 AM   #3
fajarmuhasan
Final Fantasy Mania
 
fajarmuhasan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 7,512
Likes (Received): 228

Quote:
Originally Posted by Severiano View Post
How can the four hour high speed train ride from Beijing to Shanghai compete with Air travel. A flight takes just a little over an hour and is cheaper. If you look on elong or ctrip, you can get a flight from Shanghai to Beijing for cheaper than you can get the 10 hour train now. The 10 hour train is around 550 yuan. Some flights to Beijing are as low as 350. The High-Speed train will probably be more than the 10 hour train.
Also many people say that the reason to take a train is because the stations are more centrally located than airports, but Shanghai's HSR station is right next to the airport!!!!And Beijing's South Station isn't that close to stuff either. Just saying.
Its surprise for me that airticket cheaper than train but there is benefit to use train or HSR such as we can see some good view of landscape.
fajarmuhasan no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 27th, 2009, 06:57 AM   #4
big-dog
Moderator
 
big-dog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 13,276
Likes (Received): 4168

Quote:
Originally Posted by Severiano View Post
How can the four hour high speed train ride from Beijing to Shanghai compete with Air travel. A flight takes just a little over an hour and is cheaper. If you look on elong or ctrip, you can get a flight from Shanghai to Beijing for cheaper than you can get the 10 hour train now. The 10 hour train is around 550 yuan. Some flights to Beijing are as low as 350. The High-Speed train will probably be more than the 10 hour train.
Also many people say that the reason to take a train is because the stations are more centrally located than airports, but Shanghai's HSR station is right next to the airport!!!!And Beijing's South Station isn't that close to stuff either. Just saying.
For me I hate the airport check-in procedures, and I think eventually HSR will be cheaper than flight considering its large loading capacity, which is suitable to a populous country like China.

and the HSR is not only benefitial to people in the two cities, all the people along the rail line will be having a chance to use the fast transportation.
big-dog no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 27th, 2009, 02:36 PM   #5
alec74
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 827
Likes (Received): 3

Quote:
Originally Posted by big-dog View Post
For me I hate the airport check-in procedures, and I think eventually HSR will be cheaper than flight considering its large loading capacity, which is suitable to a populous country like China.

and the HSR is not only benefitial to people in the two cities, all the people along the rail line will be having a chance to use the fast transportation.
Exactly, chek-in procedures for airplanes are always a pain in the ass, even for very short flights. And also, u often have to deal with late departures and long waits to get off the plain after landing, due to congestion in airports. For this kind of trips I've always preferred fast trains. U can get off as soon as the train stops and so on. And usually stations are much easier to get to than airports. Beijing South station is well inside the city, while the airport is much remote (of course, depending from what part of the city u'r coming from)
alec74 no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 31st, 2009, 01:36 AM   #6
maldini
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 741
Likes (Received): 59

Quote:
Originally Posted by fajarmuhasan View Post
Its surprise for me that airticket cheaper than train but there is benefit to use train or HSR such as we can see some good view of landscape.
When you sit in a HSR, how can you see the landscape, when the seat backs of the row of seats in front of you are so tall? You can only see the view through the windows right beside you. That means you have to turn your neck for the whole journey.
maldini no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 31st, 2009, 08:16 AM   #7
Celebriton
Registered User
 
Celebriton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 2,542
Likes (Received): 278

Based on this link: http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?p...d=a1OCyCBH6Jws

It said:
Quote:
China Southern’s traffic on flights between Beijing and Taiyuan in Shanxi province fell about 60 percent after a high- speed rail link began operations, Si said. There was a 30 percent decline on Shanghai-Wuhan trips, he said.

High-speed train tickets will be about 40 percent cheaper than current air tickets, according to Si’s estimations. A five- hour rail trip from Shanghai to Beijing, for instance, will likely be about 700 yuan ($103), or about 60 percent of the price asked for the two-hour flight.
Celebriton no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 31st, 2009, 12:23 PM   #8
chornedsnorkack
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 3,641
Likes (Received): 181

Quote:
Originally Posted by alec74 View Post
Exactly, chek-in procedures for airplanes are always a pain in the ass, even for very short flights.
This is not the biggest issue. Check-in procedures of trains might be made harsher because of stowaways or Uighur terrorists (but I understand Spanish AVE is still easier to get on than a plane, even after Atocha explosions) or check-in to planes might be made easier (even less likely).

But a strong difference with planes is that all planes endure substantial accelerations on takeoff and landing, and can have turbulence. Standing or walking during takeoff or landing is difficult and forbidden for good reasons. Whereas trains have modest accelerations on starting and stopping, so it is entirely practical to stand and walk at any stage of trip - trains do not even have safety belts.
chornedsnorkack no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 31st, 2009, 09:23 PM   #9
Restless
Registered User
 
Restless's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: London
Posts: 2,100
Likes (Received): 158

Summary

Beijing and Shanghai are only the endpoints of the line. Don't forget that China is in the middle of an urbanisation boom which will see 200million+ peasants move to the cities in the next 20years.

The new stations along the BJ-SH line are planned to eventually connect 20 cities with a combined population of 60million+. Indeed, some of these are set to become their own megacities along the lines of Chicago or Osaka, and be traffic destinations in their own right.

In any case, it will be a maximum of 650km (2hours) to reach either Beijing or Shanghai. These people will most certainly be taking the train, given:

a) the general inaccessiblity of airports along the line
b) probably lower ticket costs
c) total journey times on the plane will be longer
d) convenience of the train (the train station is normally closer, the trains can run frequently (eg. every 10min) and tickets are easier to obtain)
e) although most of the new stations are being built in the suburbs or countryside near a major existing city (due to lower land and construction costs), new cities are being built or planned around these stations.

As for the 4-hour Beijing-Shanghai train journey, I see a number of advantages:

1. Check-in procedures for trains currently are faster and less strict than airplanes.
2. You can use your mobile phone on the train!!
3. There is space to use your laptop on the train, and you can connect to the cloud. So you can work or surf the internet for a full 4hours in comfort!
4. The is generally less "wasted" time standing around and waiting (eg. waiting to collect your luggage)
5. The ride will be uber-smooth (ala. Beijing-Tianjin, Shinkansen, TGV). No turbulence means no seat belts
6. There is a lot more space on the train, compared to the plane.
7. Prices on discounted plane tickets may be lower, but you can always get a seat or stand on the train. NB. Each train is 400m, holds 1000+ people and can run every 5minutes

In addition, both the airports in Beijing and the existing low-speed BJ-SH line are currently operating at over 110% of their capacity.

And don't forget that there are 7 other mainlines (10,000km+) under construction or planning, all with similar goals.

NB. Just look at what the Tokaido Shinkansen (the Tokyo to Osaka line) did for Japan at a similar stage of its development in the 1960s. It connected the 2 largest cities in Japan, spurred more equal development along the line, and its profits single-handedly subsidise the operation of the rest of the railway network!

On the other hand, if you look at almost every other railway project, almost none would be profitable if funded on a private basis. The key difference has been whether the huge increase in land and property prices (caused by the arrival of the railway) could be used to offset the huge costs of construction. In China's case, the government owns all the land, and auctions it to developers. So they should be able to cover much of the initial sunk costs.

Last edited by Restless; October 31st, 2009 at 09:44 PM. Reason: Additional Info
Restless no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old November 1st, 2009, 03:16 AM   #10
dodge321
Registered User
 
dodge321's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Auckland...now in Hong Kong
Posts: 245
Likes (Received): 12

Given the choice of a 4 hour train ride or a 2 hour flight I'd take the train anyday.
dodge321 no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old December 27th, 2009, 01:58 AM   #11
Steve_R
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 1
Likes (Received): 0

From my experiences of living and working in China (8 years now) these high speed trains are indeed remarkable and can surely change the societal landscape, but there are a few concerns here.

One is that most of the HSR ticket prices are still out of reach for the peasants, migrant workers, university students, and overall masses who will end up on the slower and more crowded trains. Those slower trains will continue to coexist with the faster trains, but they literally get sidelined at stations to make way for the HSR lines. This can often mean delays of 30 minutes or more, and a cascading effect where the slow train gets further and further delayed down the line. On the other hand, as time goes on, the HSR will be on completely separate track so this problem should take care of itself. Right now there is much overlap with 'D trains' using the same track as the regular trains, which could continue for the next 3-5 years until the HSR is more developed

A second concern is that the HSR won't benefit people along the line between endpoint cities, and they will be relegated to the slower trains. If the HSR does end up connecting many of the in-between cities, it could turn into a slower train by default and lose the high speed 'edge' that the richer folks going between endpoint cities would want. This is already happening with the Shanghai-Wuhan line. Some of the lines are direct, but not all, and it's common to see 10-12 stops along a "high speed" line, and more overcrowding.

A solution to this would be to maintain exclusive point-to-point HSR on certain routes at higher prices, and then use other 'hybrid' HSR routes that would connect a portion of the cities in between, making sure that passengers could clearly tell what kind of train they are taking when they purchase the ticket.

The present train system in China has multiple overlaps of various classes and over 90% of people buying tickets at the station don't do the homework or research what kind of train they want. They just show up and tell the clerk where they are going, often with 2-3 attempts as tickets are often sold out (meiyou meiyou). The clerk finds the first available ticket based on limited search criteria. In this context, it would be easy to wind up with a slow train to the same city without knowing it, as the clerks are impatient and dealing with endless throngs of passengers all day long. In other words, there's not a lot of customer service, and the buyer has to know the complicated train system inside and out to maximize the advantage of the HSR.
Steve_R no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old December 27th, 2009, 02:47 AM   #12
Scion
Registered User
 
Scion's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Hong Kong, Shenzhen
Posts: 3,023
Likes (Received): 1019

Some valid points there. According to the news several "normal speed" services were cut between WH and GZ as the high speed line opens. The newsreader said they are "forcing" people to ride the expensive CRH.
Scion está en línea ahora   Reply With Quote
Old December 27th, 2009, 02:57 PM   #13
Mika Montwald
Improving Earth
 
Mika Montwald's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Planet EARTH
Posts: 112
Likes (Received): 1

Arrow

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve_R View Post
... ...
One is that most of the HSR ticket prices are still out of reach for the peasants, migrant workers, university students, and overall masses who will end up on the slower and more crowded trains. ... ...

The present train system in China has multiple overlaps of various classes and over 90% of people buying tickets at the station don't do the homework or research what kind of train they want. They just show up and tell the clerk where they are going, often with 2-3 attempts as tickets are often sold out (meiyou meiyou). The clerk finds the first available ticket based on limited search criteria. In this context, it would be easy to wind up with a slow train to the same city without knowing it, as the clerks are impatient and dealing with endless throngs of passengers all day long. In other words, there's not a lot of customer service, and the buyer has to know the complicated train system inside and out to maximize the advantage of the HSR.



Absolutely astute and accurate observation.
I do not mean to offend anyone with my remarks below.

Let's keep the CRH ticket prices high and out of reach for the general masses for a long while.

Because: Anyone who is embarrassing the whole China Nation by being dirty, carelessly throwing thrash,
spitting, smoking, jumping the queue, carelessly disposing chewing gum on the floor
or on the train, or generally looks and smell dirty should be prohibited to ride the nice CRH train.

Unfortunately at this moment, too many general masses are embarrassing and destroying
the National image by behaving unethically as described above.
And, upward 99% of Han Chinese in general are too concerned about their own affairs,
and they are extremely reluctant to remind their neighbors to behave ethically.

I hope the general masses are willing to erase their unethical behavior as soon as possible,
hence it would make sense to welcome everyone across the board to ride the CRH.

The general masses still have not harnessed the power of the internet and Search Engine
or by visiting ( huoche.com.cn ).
They fail to research and do the proper due diligence in advance on how to maximize and enjoy their train ride.

__________________
HUGE DENSE FOREST Covering Cities


Are you studying the Basic Traditional Proper CIVILIZED BEHAVIORS <弟子规> ??

Last edited by Mika Montwald; December 27th, 2009 at 04:43 PM.
Mika Montwald no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old December 27th, 2009, 09:04 PM   #14
Whiteeclipse
Registered User
 
Whiteeclipse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Florida, USA/Moscow, RU
Posts: 2,589
Likes (Received): 350

Mika Montwald, are you Chinese?
__________________
Jonathan and Charlotte - Britain's Got Talent 2012 Live Semi Final
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eEc2WxCUcY

It's China's world, we just live in it.
Whiteeclipse no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old December 27th, 2009, 10:32 PM   #15
SilentStrike
Registered User
 
SilentStrike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Wassenaar
Posts: 1,753
Likes (Received): 172

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiteeclipse View Post
Mika Montwald, are you Chinese?
Location: Guangzhou
SilentStrike no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old December 27th, 2009, 10:38 PM   #16
snow is red
Vicky Pollard lol
 
snow is red's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 5,090
Likes (Received): 87

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiteeclipse View Post
Mika Montwald, are you Chinese?
I think he/she is , judging from the answer that he/she gave for my simple question in other Chinese train thread. It's so passionate
snow is red no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old December 27th, 2009, 10:39 PM   #17
snow is red
Vicky Pollard lol
 
snow is red's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 5,090
Likes (Received): 87

Quote:
Originally Posted by SilentStrike View Post
Location: Guangzhou
And foreigners don't come to Guangzhou ?
snow is red no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old December 28th, 2009, 12:03 AM   #18
SilentStrike
Registered User
 
SilentStrike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Wassenaar
Posts: 1,753
Likes (Received): 172

Quote:
Originally Posted by snow is red View Post
And foreigners don't come to Guangzhou ?
GZ has 50,000 foreigners.. out of 10,000,000 people... you can logically assume hes chinese with a 99.5% chance
SilentStrike no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old December 28th, 2009, 05:20 AM   #19
CoCoMilk
Registered User
 
CoCoMilk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 2,563
Likes (Received): 917

but the username is very foreign! xD Chinese tend to use weird usernames or Chinese sounded words.
CoCoMilk no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old December 28th, 2009, 10:43 AM   #20
Mika Montwald
Improving Earth
 
Mika Montwald's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Planet EARTH
Posts: 112
Likes (Received): 1

Arrow

Amiable Greetings to everyone in this fantastic forum.
And, my Profound Gratitude to this awesome forum Owners, Admin, and Mods.

Thanks for inquiring and wondering about my race origin.
I do not mean to be rude, but I do not want to answer my origin just yet at this moment.

Going back to the thread topic … …

Let's see how fast and how high the existence of CRH Hi-Speed infrastructures in
stimulating the local economy along those nationwide CRH Hi-Speed routes.

We may see a Big Time increase in economic efficiency and output.

Maybe a few years from now, we will see the GDP data for the cities along the CRH routes to exceed 15% per annum.
Case in point is Tianjin 2009 GDP, if I am not mistaken -- the Tianjin final 2009 GDP will come in to exceed 17% per annum.
__________________
HUGE DENSE FOREST Covering Cities


Are you studying the Basic Traditional Proper CIVILIZED BEHAVIORS <弟子规> ??

Last edited by Mika Montwald; December 28th, 2009 at 01:18 PM.
Mika Montwald no está en línea   Reply With Quote


Reply

Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT +2. The time now is 08:42 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Feedback Buttons provided by Advanced Post Thanks / Like v3.2.5 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

SkyscraperCity ☆ In Urbanity We trust ☆ about us | privacy policy | DMCA policy

Hosted by Blacksun, dedicated to this site too!
Forum server management by DaiTengu