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Old April 2nd, 2015, 07:58 PM   #741
kunming tiger
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Does this mean all the tunnelling has been completed? If not then how much is left?
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Old April 28th, 2015, 04:15 PM   #742
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High-speed rail bill ‘likely to soar to HK$85 bn
28 April 2015
South China Morning Post Excerpt

Lawmaker Michael Tien expects controversial scheme to come in some 30 per cent over budget – and courts may decide who pays

The cost of building the already delayed and over-budget high-speed rail link to Guangzhou is likely to surge to a whopping HK$85 billion – 30 per cent more than the original HK$65 billion budget, legislator and former railway boss Michael Tien Puk-sun warned yesterday.

The New People’s Party lawmaker, who chairs the Legislative Council’s transport panel, said he had learned the estimate through “various channels”, including contractors and MTR insiders. He said neither the MTR Corporation nor the government would want to bear the extra cost. That raised the possibility of the corporation and its majority shareholder, the government, ending up in court.

The MTR Corporation confirmed in its annual report earlier this month that the cost of the Express Rail Link could be adjusted “significantly” upward, without giving specific figures.

News broke in April last year that the link, originally scheduled to open this year, would not be ready until at least 2017. The railway operator said after that announcement that the construction cost would snowball to HK$71.5 billion, 10 per cent more than the initial HK$65 billion budget.

It had blamed difficult ground conditions and problems with tunnel boring for the delay.

The fiasco led to the early departure of MTR chief executive Jay Walder in August. The American was replaced by Lincoln Leong Kwok-kuen.

“The MTR is now using money to catch up and have the link open in 2017. If no extra money is used, the link may not open even in 2018,” said Tien, adding that contingency funding was running out.
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Old April 28th, 2015, 06:40 PM   #743
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Why does Hong Kong have so much trouble with this one line while Mainland China seems to be building thousands of kilometers of high speed lines with ease? I guess from reading the articles I'm not getting it in a nutshell. I just wonder what Mainland China is doing differently, I thought similar techniques were going to be shared across the border.
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Old April 28th, 2015, 07:07 PM   #744
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FM 2258 View Post


Why does Hong Kong have so much trouble with this one line while Mainland China seems to be building thousands of kilometers of high speed lines with ease? I guess from reading the articles I'm not getting it in a nutshell. I just wonder what Mainland China is doing differently, I thought similar techniques were going to be shared across the border.
Because they are going it "the western" way, so it comes with all the trappings of all western style public works, including army full of guess what "consultants" - a special breed of people that can tell you all the things that you need to do but can never do it themselves.
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Old April 28th, 2015, 10:47 PM   #745
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FM 2258 View Post


Why does Hong Kong have so much trouble with this one line while Mainland China seems to be building thousands of kilometers of high speed lines with ease? I guess from reading the articles I'm not getting it in a nutshell. I just wonder what Mainland China is doing differently, I thought similar techniques were going to be shared across the border.
I'm sure there are massive cost overruns on HSR construction in the mainland. They just aren't reported.
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Old April 28th, 2015, 11:18 PM   #746
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I'm sure there are massive cost overruns on HSR construction in the mainland. They just aren't reported.
Why are you so sure? I am curious. Any evidence?
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Old April 29th, 2015, 12:29 AM   #747
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Quote:
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I'm sure there are massive cost overruns on HSR construction in the mainland. They just aren't reported.
I doubt that. the investment amounts and what has been done are in front of us. There may be overruns but cannot be significant.
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Old April 29th, 2015, 02:41 AM   #748
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I doubt that. the investment amounts and what has been done are in front of us. There may be overruns but cannot be significant.
The government can publish any number it wants as the investment amount. It can claim to have built the Beijing Shanghai High Speed Railway for 1 million Yuan if it wishes. It can claim the workers and suppliers worked tirelessly for the glorious Party without pay as if they were all Lei Feng. It doesn't make a difference.

But, the *fact* it reduced the operational speed, and reduced the specifications of certain lines, hints they recognize the cost overruns are large enough to compel face-losing cuts.
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Old April 29th, 2015, 03:24 AM   #749
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Back to the same old story. There's no point comparing this project to the one in main land China.
Everyone has the freedom to believe what they see or hear, if everything from CCP controlled media is treated as propaganda, just a reminder, there's even more anti-China propaganda you can access.
Whatever's going to happen on this project, let it happen.
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Old April 29th, 2015, 03:56 AM   #750
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanfan89 View Post
The government can publish any number it wants as the investment amount. It can claim to have built the Beijing Shanghai High Speed Railway for 1 million Yuan if it wishes. It can claim the workers and suppliers worked tirelessly for the glorious Party without pay as if they were all Lei Feng. It doesn't make a difference.

But, the *fact* it reduced the operational speed, and reduced the specifications of certain lines, hints they recognize the cost overruns are large enough to compel face-losing cuts.

I see zero relationship with investment on the construction and speed reduction. The annual investment on rail infrastructure is about 75 billion dollar for the last 8 years. And the result is the largest high speed rail network on earth. It adds up for me. A larger spending cannot be hidden.

I have always thought speed reduction is political. Still do.
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Old April 29th, 2015, 05:01 AM   #751
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FM 2258 View Post


Why does Hong Kong have so much trouble with this one line while Mainland China seems to be building thousands of kilometers of high speed lines with ease? I guess from reading the articles I'm not getting it in a nutshell. I just wonder what Mainland China is doing differently, I thought similar techniques were going to be shared across the border.
The entire Hong Kong section is tunnelled and go through some densely-populated areas with skyscrapers and utilities that need to be carefully avoided. This is unlike in China, where lines run mostly above ground. It was especially tricky to bore beneath wetlands in the initial approach as well. Plus, you can't just clear out / expropriate entire neighbourhoods at ease in HK like in mainland China. So naturally things slow down because of due process.
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Old April 29th, 2015, 05:52 AM   #752
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For the same reason that you don't see this scrawled across buildings in Hong Kong

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Old April 29th, 2015, 05:57 AM   #753
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What does that mean?
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Old April 29th, 2015, 12:07 PM   #754
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanfan89 View Post
The government can publish any number it wants as the investment amount. It can claim to have built the Beijing Shanghai High Speed Railway for 1 million Yuan if it wishes. It can claim the workers and suppliers worked tirelessly for the glorious Party without pay as if they were all Lei Feng. It doesn't make a difference.

But, the *fact* it reduced the operational speed, and reduced the specifications of certain lines, hints they recognize the cost overruns are large enough to compel face-losing cuts.
I can't see any logic correlation between the two points you presented above
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Old April 29th, 2015, 06:13 PM   #755
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---
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Old April 29th, 2015, 06:14 PM   #756
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What does that mean?
Destroy, tear down

Buildings have this written on them once the government decides they need to go
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Old April 29th, 2015, 07:08 PM   #757
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It's the Chinese character for "dismantle." Hong Kong has/does engage in tear downs, 'cept they're ignored by many of the accounts here. Look at current photos of Hong Kong, then look at photos from a generation or so ago. Most everything in Hong Kong has been torn down and replaced. The tide is just a bit slower now. Most of the torn-down buildings are built to a cost, and will inevitably be replaced with higher quality and higher densities. This occurs a LOT in fast-growing, developing world cities. In every situation, the loss of the buildings isn't nearly as important as re-housing their former inhabitants and small shopkeepers in better quality, convenient locations. The small number of historically significant HK buildings were located in Central--from an architectural perspective, those should NOT have been torn down. Unfortunately money trumps architectural concerns in just about every place.

The HK high speed rail is delayed because politically and financially powerful overlords derive fat profits from artificially limited and very expensive Hong Kong real estate. If a convenient rail connection is established with a much cheaper locale, those high land prices (and the profits of the banking/real estate nexus) could become precarious. It's the same reason why Singapore procrastinates with its HSR link to the Malaysian mainland. Go back a few decades, and the New York City politicians sabotaged the proposed New Jersey-New York subway lines. PATH service is alright, but doesn't have the same convenience/capacity as the MTA lines. It's a reason why Northern New Jersey looks the way it does. Go back even further, and the Parisian politicos insisted on a very small bore subway system--anything to avoid a connection with the cheaper/lower class burbs outside of Paris.

Yet politicians aren't dumb, and they won't freely admit to acting out of the oligarchs' selfish financial interests. Thus they cite fiscal concerns, or environmental concerns, etc. LOLZ. Public infrastructure construction by definition isn't going to generate profits, and if you think a public transit line is detrimental to the environment, you might as well believe in the Flat Earth Society. Why would the HSR line be continually singled out as environmentally destructive, when similar bore subways and bigger bore highways (with exhaust emissions) cut through the mountainous areas of Hong Kong? The folks who benefit from artificially limited public transit are the inner city landlords and their banker accomplices. Yet others still support policies that are harmful to themselves. False Consciousness?

Go back to the 1990s, and the same Bullsh*t fiscal/environmental reasons were given for continually postponing the rail connections between urban Kowloon and Tuen Mun/Yuen Long. The real estate cartels bought residential/commercial development land on the cheap, and a decade later the rail line funding appeared and the environmental concerns disappeared.

Unfortunately you'll see more than a few forumers basing their editorials on their own prejudices, and ignoring actual history and empirical evidence.
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Old April 30th, 2015, 03:44 AM   #758
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Except it was held up mostly by bad ground conditions.
The human opposition for it came from the farmers a small village called Choi Yuen Tsuen that would have to be demolished, and residents of local apartments fearing vibration damage. In fact the protests argued your exact point reversed, that the Hong Kong locals' welfare was being ignored for a project that would benefit the economic elite.

However I am sure you are correct and that Grandma Lo from Choi Yuen Tsuen is actually a property tycoon in her spare time and is greedily protecting her assets from a project that certainly benefits everyone in HK.

As an aside, of course buildings are replaced in Hong Kong, except there happens to be legal protections for those that currently own them thay don't exist in the mainland. Which is why they can't have chai painted on the front and be torn down a week later.

It's almost like people are paid to write nonsense like that...
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Last edited by Sopomon; April 30th, 2015 at 04:28 AM.
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Old April 30th, 2015, 04:54 AM   #759
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The fact that Choi Yuen Tsuen became such a big story and took a long time to settle is testament to Hong Kong's rule of law and everyone is subject to due process to safeguard their rights.
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Old April 30th, 2015, 11:37 AM   #760
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Sometimes projects fail miserably, and serve as a warning never to take any project for granted. By the end of this year the Hallandsås Tunnel, a medium long rail tunnel between Gothenburg and Malmö, will finally open. It was a disaster. Planning started in 1985 (30 years ago), building in 1992 (23 years ago). It has taken four times as long, and become twelve times as expensive, as originally planned.

The new Berlin airport is a current example.
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