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Old February 28th, 2017, 05:34 PM   #1081
hkskyline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
The figures I quoted are for West Kowloon Terminus only. They are part of the Operational Viability Report for the station. Original forecast was for WKT to handle 99,000 passengers per day during 2016 (based on original completion date), with 84,000 passengers using Guangzhou Shuttle services and 15,000 long distance passengers beyond Guangzhou. 2021 has an estimate of 119,700 passengers in total with 100,800 shuttle passengers and 18,900 long haul passengers. 2031 figures were put at 160,000 passengers per day, 134,700 shuttle passengers and 25,300 long haul passengers. These are outbound figures only departing from West Kowloon Terminus with long haul services clearly defined as 'Beyond the Pearl River Delta'.
Comparing these figures to the reported CRH train schedule shows this report makes no sense, and the ultimate decision authority for train frequencies rests with CRH, who have devised <10 trains a day will go beyond Guangzhou out of 190. Will 4% of capacity carry 15% of the projected passengers upon original completion?

The MTR has a long track record for inaccurate forecasts for their past new HK lines.

This estimate gap will then lead to incorrect infrastructure designs downstream, and the discussion below.

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
It is not related to Hung Hom and any continued services from that station. Through train passenger numbers in the report for 2016 were indicated to drop to 5,200 passengers (a -6.6% fall in numbers), with the XRL in operation.
According to the government's yearbook, in 2015, the intercity through train carried on average 11,500 passengers a day.

http://www.yearbook.gov.hk/2015/en/pdf/E13.pdf

Your math doesn't add up.

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
Yes, the MTR Express Rail Link website. Which states as follows

The Terminus and major facilities will be mainly underground on four main floor levels accommodating:
  • Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) facilities
  • Departure lounges
  • Passenger arrival and departure halls
  • Underground track area with 9 long-haul platforms and 6 shuttle platforms
  • Duty-free outlets
  • Food and beverage outlets
  • Station parking and loading facilities


Plus it is on the plans for the station. Which are physically different, because of the short commuter nature of the shuttle trains and the long length of the long distance trains. So they could not be quickly or conveniently reconfigured for increased Shuttle use. There has been a deliberate independent passenger flow process for the separate shuttle and long haul trains built into the station's design.
Due to the inaccurate estimates above, the facilities have been built to the wrong needs. The <10 long-haul trains a day will have plenty of space to park. There have not been any publications to indicate the mix of long-haul and shuttle services will drastically change at this time.

There have also been plenty of debates in Legco on why so many platforms are needed, but that's another story altogether.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
There is no defined destination for any long haul high speed service yet. Who said the only long distance services would be Beijing or Shanghai? Beijing would most likely be the longest service departing from WKT, so it would be the best example of train having to run empty near the end of it's journey due to immigration and custom constraints, thus I gave it as an example. Despite this, there is a viable market for such long distance trains departing from Shenzhen.
Looking at the current CRH schedule from Guangzhou, you will quickly see long-haul makes up a tiny portion of the schedule and is not viable. Tomorrow, there are only 5 high-speed trains going from GZ to BJ. Compare that to the shorter trips of <1000km that high-speed trains are more efficient vs. flying. Between 7-7:45am, there are already 5 high-speed trains going from GZ to Wuhan.

Any argument that CRH trains will be successful for long-haul should be looked upon with a grain of salt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
No, it just costing Hong Kong more and more, with further delays and cost overruns, which would be delayed further until the mainland stations could be made operational to suit.
The cost overruns that required further Legco funding were due to construction and project mismanagement on the Hong Kong section of the line, which engineers had to dig in unprecedented, and hence, costly methods. If the ultimate solution is to put immigration clearance in the PRC, they have more than enough resources to speedily implement. They're quick at building anyway.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
Hong Kong does not just lose out in direct construction costs either. Naturally it is Hong Kong's best interest to maximise the potential of West Kowloon Terminus. It needs to make it attractive to tourist and business travellers alike, who do not want to be inconvenienced.
That's not a reason to break the Basic Law.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
It would be better to hop directly on a train bound for your intended destination, without having to use a intermediate shuttle service or get off the train shortly after departing HK to complete formalities. This will have an impact on the HK economy in business and tourist terms. Without juxtaposed controls there would be further deadweight to the HK Government's investment in West Kowloon Terminus, because all of the platforms for long haul trains not being utilised as designed because of the fewer long haul services, if any are served. Especially if HK pushes for all travellers to change trains at Shenzhen/Guangzhou.
The schedule leak shows ultimately the vast majority of passengers will need to get off at Guangzhou or before. Not sure what was the rationale behind this, but I think the transport planners realize switching people from flying through an efficient airport like HKG to the train for really long distance trips probably is not that economically viable (like what we see from the Guangzhou schedule), and HK incomes are high enough for people to pay to fly and save some time over a cheaper, slower train ride.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
Lastly, with out any legislation being put before the Legco for consideration, no one can say if it would be damaging to the Basic Law. Can you define the exact damage that you are so fearful of?
The fact that there has been no arrangement publicized yet even though the shovels have been in the ground for years mean they have a huge legal question involved. We all can read the Basic Law and one of the proposals for joint immigration clearly violates that. Their options are limited. This is not an "if", but a real violation of the Basic Law.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
So far 6 national laws have been placed into Annex 3 of the Basic Law and life in Hong Kong has not screeched to a halt yet. Wait until we see the full scope of what is proposed at WKT, to see if it is limited in law just to that site or if it is ambiguous to include other areas of HK, both in a physical and legal sense.

It may turn out to be a storm in a tea cup or your fears may be justified, no one can tell at this time.
You can't compare this one to the others. Legco had already heard of major concerns over the legal aspects of any co-location.

http://www.legco.gov.hk/yr15-16/engl...wsc-88-1-e.pdf

http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/p...not-threatened

The storm has already arrived, and the threat is very real.
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Old March 1st, 2017, 07:05 AM   #1082
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkskyline View Post
Comparing these figures to the reported CRH train schedule shows this report makes no sense, and the ultimate decision authority for train frequencies rests with CRH, who have devised <10 trains a day will go beyond Guangzhou out of 190. Will 4% of capacity carry 15% of the projected passengers upon original completion?
Yes, 4% of traffic can carry 15% of the traffic because they are bigger, longer trains capable of 1,600 passengers each, compared to the short commuter style shuttles for the Pearl River Delta that are suitable for only a few hundred people per service. That is why the platforms have been intentionally designed physically different for these needs.

Quote:
The MTR has a long track record for inaccurate forecasts for their past new HK lines.

This estimate gap will then lead to incorrect infrastructure designs downstream, and the discussion below.
That is no different to any feasibility report for any transport infrastructure that I have ever seen. The figures always turn out to be different, sometimes wildly and sometimes close to the end result. However, it does show an intent to have long distance trains serving destination beyond Guangzhou, regardless of the actual numbers that end up using that service.

Quote:
According to the government's yearbook, in 2015, the intercity through train carried on average 11,500 passengers a day.

http://www.yearbook.gov.hk/2015/en/pdf/E13.pdf

Your math doesn't add up.
Firstly, the maths is not my maths. It is the official figures collated and published by the MTR.

Secondly, this was done in 2009, when West Kowloon service was to be in service. When it does open, there is a reasonable expectation of a passenger shift from the Through Trains at Hung Hom to WKT shuttles and long distance services. The maths is correct based on the scenario it portrays with WKT opening on schedule, which we now know is heavily delayed.

Quote:
Due to the inaccurate estimates above, the facilities have been built to the wrong needs. The <10 long-haul trains a day will have plenty of space to park. There have not been any publications to indicate the mix of long-haul and shuttle services will drastically change at this time.

There have also been plenty of debates in Legco on why so many platforms are needed, but that's another story altogether.
Regardless of your personal opinion if the needs are wrong. That does not change the fact that it has been designed and built to suit those needs. The shuttle services have been designed to handle multiple trains only a few minutes apart in a commuter style fashion, compared to handling 1,600 passengers on long distance service, where the longer trains themselves need to be handled in a different way, in means of cleaning, refurbishment and baggage.

Plus you say 10 or so long distance service a day as if that would be the only allowed limit. That leaked schedule may not be the final schedule and certainly be the train schedule for the entire service life of that railway. In a few years after opening, that number of long distance trains could easily increase to 20 or 30. The station needs to be future proofed to meet service expansion.

While the immigration and custom issue is still to be resolved, no certainty can be placed on the planning of any exact numbers.

Quote:
Looking at the current CRH schedule from Guangzhou, you will quickly see long-haul makes up a tiny portion of the schedule and is not viable. Tomorrow, there are only 5 high-speed trains going from GZ to BJ. Compare that to the shorter trips of <1000km that high-speed trains are more efficient vs. flying. Between 7-7:45am, there are already 5 high-speed trains going from GZ to Wuhan.

Any argument that CRH trains will be successful for long-haul should be looked upon with a grain of salt.
Long distance trains is not confined as being from HK to BJ, there may be just one single train on that route. However there is a high chance of 5 or so morning trains to Wuhan from HK as you point out. Plus another 5 in the evening, oh that's 10 long distance trains without much thought and consideration that could be competitive against air travel inside peak hours. Then consider possible trains to Xiamen, Nanchang, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guiyang, Guilin and Zhangjiang, certainly a lot more scope than just 10 trains per day. There are many competitive routes possible, the question is how viable would they be under each of the various customs and immigration scenarios.

Quote:
The cost overruns that required further Legco funding were due to construction and project mismanagement on the Hong Kong section of the line, which engineers had to dig in unprecedented, and hence, costly methods. If the ultimate solution is to put immigration clearance in the PRC, they have more than enough resources to speedily implement. They're quick at building anyway.
For every dollar spent by any government or business, they will want to maximise every possible return on that investment. No matter what caused the cost blowout, they will still want to prove to their shareholder or constituents that the project will pay for itself and to justify the expense.

Thus the prospect of mothballing the use of platforms or making train services unpopular because of passenger inconvenience, then it is harder to justify the amounts spent.

Quote:
That's not a reason to break the Basic Law.
I would never suggest any reason to break the Basic Law, that would imply making it totally irrelevant or ineffective. The argument is not just a legal one but has to be balanced against financial, social and other needs.

Also you can not claim it would break the Basic Law when no legislation or drafts have been made available about the proposed legal framework. You can not debate the merits of an argument that has not even been made.

I would not condone any legal change that would be detrimental to Hong Kong and it's people. However I can not say any legal change would be bad without seeing what is actually being proposed.

Quote:
The schedule leak shows ultimately the vast majority of passengers will need to get off at Guangzhou or before. Not sure what was the rationale behind this, but I think the transport planners realize switching people from flying through an efficient airport like HKG to the train for really long distance trips probably is not that economically viable (like what we see from the Guangzhou schedule), and HK incomes are high enough for people to pay to fly and save some time over a cheaper, slower train ride.
The only feasible certainty, when the customs and immigration issue is yet to be decided, are the Pearl River Delta shuttle services. So naturally that is what planners will focus on for the initial short term. It would be foolish to announce a massive number of long distance services, just to have them cancelled because of the need to adjust how they operate, due to mainland stations needing to be reconfigured for customs and immigration. If juxtaposed controls are allowed, then it is easier for more long distance services to be added to the schedule. You can not base it solely on economic issues of HK person either when the traffic using the service are just as likely to be mainland Chinese arriving and departing. Until the legal issue is resolved, no train schedule can be set in stone.

Quote:
The fact that there has been no arrangement publicized yet even though the shovels have been in the ground for years mean they have a huge legal question involved. We all can read the Basic Law and one of the proposals for joint immigration clearly violates that. Their options are limited. This is not an "if", but a real violation of the Basic Law.
Nobody is under any illusions that it is not a simple or easy task to resolve. Yet it does not mean that it is impossible either. Again you have not defined what the damage is. Is it long term, short term or minor? Is there a compromise that could limit or eliminate any damage?

Quote:
You can't compare this one to the others. Legco had already heard of major concerns over the legal aspects of any co-location.

http://www.legco.gov.hk/yr15-16/engl...wsc-88-1-e.pdf

http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/p...not-threatened

The storm has already arrived, and the threat is very real.
Nobody is disputing that there is a very real threat and justified fear. However that has to be balanced with a rationale discussion and debate. Yes, everyone of those six laws were unique in their own ways and all brought up concerns and fears of their own. This is what good government is capable of doing, where we must support that government despite our personal beliefs.

Wait until the legislation is put forward, then worthy comment is due. Otherwise everything is pure speculation.
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Old March 1st, 2017, 02:24 PM   #1083
hkskyline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
Yes, 4% of traffic can carry 15% of the traffic because they are bigger, longer trains capable of 1,600 passengers each, compared to the short commuter style shuttles for the Pearl River Delta that are suitable for only a few hundred people per service. That is why the platforms have been intentionally designed physically different for these needs.

That is no different to any feasibility report for any transport infrastructure that I have ever seen. The figures always turn out to be different, sometimes wildly and sometimes close to the end result. However, it does show an intent to have long distance trains serving destination beyond Guangzhou, regardless of the actual numbers that end up using that service.
Then this report should not even be considered due to its inaccuracies. The best way is to look at the reported schedule, which shows very few long distance trains, and at Guangzhou's schedule, which paints the same story.

The intent to serve beyond Guangzhou is very weak.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
Firstly, the maths is not my maths. It is the official figures collated and published by the MTR.

Secondly, this was done in 2009, when West Kowloon service was to be in service. When it does open, there is a reasonable expectation of a passenger shift from the Through Trains at Hung Hom to WKT shuttles and long distance services. The maths is correct based on the scenario it portrays with WKT opening on schedule, which we now know is heavily delayed.
You should be using more recent figures. We know those long-ago estimates are way off, just like similar estimates of new line patronage.

The real issue is whether the 11,000+ passengers that ride the thru train daily will swap to the HSR, which won't give much time savings since GZ South is nowhere near the CBD.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
Regardless of your personal opinion if the needs are wrong. That does not change the fact that it has been designed and built to suit those needs. The shuttle services have been designed to handle multiple trains only a few minutes apart in a commuter style fashion, compared to handling 1,600 passengers on long distance service, where the longer trains themselves need to be handled in a different way, in means of cleaning, refurbishment and baggage.
Just because it has been built albeit to the incorrect reality doesn't mean you make it more wrong by violating the Basic Law even though fears of immigration complexities are overblown by the lacklustre long-distance services planned.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
Plus you say 10 or so long distance service a day as if that would be the only allowed limit. That leaked schedule may not be the final schedule and certainly be the train schedule for the entire service life of that railway. In a few years after opening, that number of long distance trains could easily increase to 20 or 30. The station needs to be future proofed to meet service expansion.
This is the most recent service "estimate", which is far more reliable and relevant than the dated studies you quoted.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
Long distance trains is not confined as being from HK to BJ, there may be just one single train on that route. However there is a high chance of 5 or so morning trains to Wuhan from HK as you point out. Plus another 5 in the evening, oh that's 10 long distance trains without much thought and consideration that could be competitive against air travel inside peak hours. Then consider possible trains to Xiamen, Nanchang, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guiyang, Guilin and Zhangjiang, certainly a lot more scope than just 10 trains per day. There are many competitive routes possible, the question is how viable would they be under each of the various customs and immigration scenarios.
I don't see how going through immigration at either end of the journey can impact the passenger's choice of transport. Flights already require this, and it would be silly to think train passengers won't take the train because they need to clear the same # of immigration points, albeit separately.

Are there any empirical studies you can quote that can show a material change in passenger behaviour?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
For every dollar spent by any government or business, they will want to maximise every possible return on that investment. No matter what caused the cost blowout, they will still want to prove to their shareholder or constituents that the project will pay for itself and to justify the expense.
Again, maximizing corporations' profits is not a reason to break or change the Basic Law and violate One Country Two Systems.

The fierce debates in Legco already point to this project being a white elephant and not cost effective. Further inappropriate decisions to support this white elephant will continue to trigger an even bigger backlash. The politicians are aware and sensitive to this. That's why so many years into construction, the immigration arrangement still can't be figured out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
I would never suggest any reason to break the Basic Law, that would imply making it totally irrelevant or ineffective. The argument is not just a legal one but has to be balanced against financial, social and other needs.
The lack of major time savings from this costly new line has already made it both irrelevant and ineffective. The politicians at the time rushed to appease Beijing's infrastructure plan without thinking clearly how this cross-border train would work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
Also you can not claim it would break the Basic Law when no legislation or drafts have been made available about the proposed legal framework. You can not debate the merits of an argument that has not even been made.
The argument of co-locating immigration facilities in HK clearly breaks the Basic Law.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
I would not condone any legal change that would be detrimental to Hong Kong and it's people. However I can not say any legal change would be bad without seeing what is actually being proposed.
Any legislation change to facilitate co-location of immigration and allowing PRC agents to enforce PRC law on Hong Kong soil points to a breakdown of One Country Two Systems. That's a very bad thing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
The only feasible certainty, when the customs and immigration issue is yet to be decided, are the Pearl River Delta shuttle services. So naturally that is what planners will focus on for the initial short term. It would be foolish to announce a massive number of long distance services, just to have them cancelled because of the need to adjust how they operate, due to mainland stations needing to be reconfigured for customs and immigration. If juxtaposed controls are allowed, then it is easier for more long distance services to be added to the schedule. You can not base it solely on economic issues of HK person either when the traffic using the service are just as likely to be mainland Chinese arriving and departing. Until the legal issue is resolved, no train schedule can be set in stone.
Looking at the Guangzhou example, which already runs a well-established line all the way to Beijing, the future of long-distance travel on the CRH is bleak. They don't have to worry about immigration facilities either that would get in the way already.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
Nobody is under any illusions that it is not a simple or easy task to resolve. Yet it does not mean that it is impossible either. Again you have not defined what the damage is. Is it long term, short term or minor? Is there a compromise that could limit or eliminate any damage?

Nobody is disputing that there is a very real threat and justified fear. However that has to be balanced with a rationale discussion and debate. Yes, everyone of those six laws were unique in their own ways and all brought up concerns and fears of their own. This is what good government is capable of doing, where we must support that government despite our personal beliefs.
Compromising One Country Two Systems would cause immediate and long-term damage to Hong Kong's rule of law and autonomy, fueling political instability and economic uncertainty.

There is no room to concede, as any attempt to circumvent the independence and automony of either side cannot be balanced by money.

Just as in our society of rule of law, the public good cannot be used as an excuse to exploit or harm the rights of even 1 individual that gets affected along the way. This concept doesn't work in China, but is enshrined in HK.
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Old March 2nd, 2017, 01:35 PM   #1084
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkskyline View Post
Then this report should not even be considered due to its inaccuracies. The best way is to look at the reported schedule, which shows very few long distance trains, and at Guangzhou's schedule, which paints the same story.

The intent to serve beyond Guangzhou is very weak.
Your argument was that there was no intent at all, I have showed you that there is an intent. Yes most traffic would be regional but that is no different to any city. Guangzhou has many times more passengers on short trips across the Pearl River Delta on a similar ratio, but that does not mean that the long distance travel is not important or to be ignored.

At Hong Kong airport the passenger figures are greatly in favour of short Asian destinations rather than long haul intercontinental passenger numbers. You can not disregard the relevance on serving those long haul destinations.

Quote:
You should be using more recent figures. We know those long-ago estimates are way off, just like similar estimates of new line patronage.

The real issue is whether the 11,000+ passengers that ride the thru train daily will swap to the HSR, which won't give much time savings since GZ South is nowhere near the CBD.
It is every bit as valid as your speculation that will have no effect. Plus just as long distance trains will not just go to Beijing, shuttle services are also expected to expand to other destinations, like Foshan, Zhongshan, Huizhou and Zhaoqing. The ability to go to Futian CBD alone would be a drawcard. Guangzhou South is not the only option and not every passenger on the Through Train is wanting to go solely to Guangzhou CBD. Future possibilities also include Guangzhou Baiyun airport too.

Quote:
Just because it has been built albeit to the incorrect reality doesn't mean you make it more wrong by violating the Basic Law even though fears of immigration complexities are overblown by the lacklustre long-distance services planned.
No service, no matter what is chosen, none of it will violate the Basic Law. You can not rule out any possible change or debate, especially when nothing has been put forward yet for consideration.

Quote:
This is the most recent service "estimate", which is far more reliable and relevant than the dated studies you quoted.
Your most recent service estimate of train services matches the passenger numbers in my estimate. That has been made clear in most of my answers. The shuttle trains will only carry a few hundred passengers each, while the few long distance trains will carry 1,500 to 1,800 passengers.

Quote:
I don't see how going through immigration at either end of the journey can impact the passenger's choice of transport. Flights already require this, and it would be silly to think train passengers won't take the train because they need to clear the same # of immigration points, albeit separately.

Are there any empirical studies you can quote that can show a material change in passenger behaviour?
Are you trying to say you have never looked at any of the many studies into Eurostar and the withdrawal of air services? Let alone other European high speed networks. If you want a more Asian viewpoint, there are existing studies in the withdrawal of domestic air services because of the Taiwan's introduction of HSR.

Time savings from not having to travel to Chep Lap Kok, not needing to be at the airport 1 hour early. Waiting at baggage carousel and immigration at the destination airport before the long transfer to the city.

With juxtaposed controls, there is only one lineup and queue, as you pass to the second immigration desk immediately after the first immigration desk. Unlike airports with potentially lengthy queues at their respective immigration halls. A proven time saving, simplified process and proven to be popular with business and tourist travellers.

Quote:
Again, maximizing corporations' profits is not a reason to break or change the Basic Law and violate One Country Two Systems.

The fierce debates in Legco already point to this project being a white elephant and not cost effective. Further inappropriate decisions to support this white elephant will continue to trigger an even bigger backlash. The politicians are aware and sensitive to this. That's why so many years into construction, the immigration arrangement still can't be figured out.
Nothing at the moment violates anything. Also it is not solely about maximising any corporations profits. It is about maximising Legco and the Hong Kong taxpayer's investment.

Quote:
The lack of major time savings from this costly new line has already made it both irrelevant and ineffective. The politicians at the time rushed to appease Beijing's infrastructure plan without thinking clearly how this cross-border train would work.
Without juxtaposed controls, the time savings would be worse. You are seemingly limiting your time savings only on HK-GZ train travel, where to Guangzhou South is questionable. Time savings to Futian CBD however is easy to see. Add to that travel to Zhongshan, Baiyun Airport, Huizhou and more, this is hardly irrelevant or ineffective. Long distance travel is well proven with HSR networks world wide and can hardly be argued against.

Quote:
The argument of co-locating immigration facilities in HK clearly breaks the Basic Law.
Exactly how, when, what or why? You have closed your mind to any possible argument before it has even begun. There is no legislation proposed to demonstrate one way or the other. Also it is impossible for the Legco to create legislation that violates the Basic Law. So as I said before, anything that is decided upon, whenever that is, will be compliant with the Basic Law.

Quote:
Any legislation change to facilitate co-location of immigration and allowing PRC agents to enforce PRC law on Hong Kong soil points to a breakdown of One Country Two Systems. That's a very bad thing.
That is a personal opinion. Can you quantify that? To what degree can you guarantee that all hell will break loose? Which exact rule or regulation are you taking offence at? What part of the legislation does not apply only to WKT and affects the whole of Hong Kong territory? Again you are putting the cart before the horse before anything has been proposed or put in place.

Quote:
Looking at the Guangzhou example, which already runs a well-established line all the way to Beijing, the future of long-distance travel on the CRH is bleak. They don't have to worry about immigration facilities either that would get in the way already.
That is no reason to base your entire beliefs purely on the Guangzhou - Beijing route. Many studies world wide have put HSR more effective with services of around 4 hours maximum, so naturally the Beijing service would not be the healthiest. However there are many more routes that are thriving around the 4 hour mark to Fujian, Guangxi, Hunan, Hubei and more. You can not claim the entire CRH network is facing oblivion.

Quote:
Compromising One Country Two Systems would cause immediate and long-term damage to Hong Kong's rule of law and autonomy, fueling political instability and economic uncertainty.

There is no room to concede, as any attempt to circumvent the independence and automony of either side cannot be balanced by money.

Just as in our society of rule of law, the public good cannot be used as an excuse to exploit or harm the rights of even 1 individual that gets affected along the way. This concept doesn't work in China, but is enshrined in HK.
The status of One Country Two Systems is not up to you or I. That is for the government of the day to do. You may not agree with them, their views or their behaviour. Your job is ensure that you have most effective government of the day, through the electoral process. You can tell your representative what your views are about any of this matter, however they in turn are entitled to their own opinion and will act accordingly even if it is contrary to your own.

At the moment you can not quantify what if any damage is even possible. You are dismissing everything before anything has been proposed. Yes, there are fears but at the moment we do not know what rules and regulations have been proposed for WKT and what safeguards may or may not be in place. There is a possibility to confine the legislation to not just West Kowloon Terminus but solely to the immigration and customs hall within, without effect on any territory outside of the station. It is also to legislate that this also only applies to particular passengers on particular services and not to the wider HK community. It can also legislate that all legal violations, regardless of PRC or HK, all matters are handled under the HK legal system.

The list can be endless, but until anything is actually published and put up for debate, then all arguments are a moot point.
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Old March 2nd, 2017, 02:39 PM   #1085
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Originally Posted by Short View Post
Your argument was that there was no intent at all, I have showed you that there is an intent. Yes most traffic would be regional but that is no different to any city. Guangzhou has many times more passengers on short trips across the Pearl River Delta on a similar ratio, but that does not mean that the long distance travel is not important or to be ignored.
I repeat. Guangzhou only has 5 trains to Beijing on the day I quoted. Long distance travel is not important to the CRH's scheduling in the grand scheme of things.

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
At Hong Kong airport the passenger figures are greatly in favour of short Asian destinations rather than long haul intercontinental passenger numbers. You can not disregard the relevance on serving those long haul destinations.
A 3-hour flight to Beijing is considered short haul from an aviation perspective but the same distance is long-haul from a train perspective.

Are there any airports that rely more on long-haul passengers than short haul? Is that justification for building HSR?

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
It is every bit as valid as your speculation that will have no effect. Plus just as long distance trains will not just go to Beijing, shuttle services are also expected to expand to other destinations, like Foshan, Zhongshan, Huizhou and Zhaoqing. The ability to go to Futian CBD alone would be a drawcard. Guangzhou South is not the only option and not every passenger on the Through Train is wanting to go solely to Guangzhou CBD. Future possibilities also include Guangzhou Baiyun airport too.
Then have them transfer in an intermediate point to another shuttle. They will clear immigration in China. Problem solved.

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
No service, no matter what is chosen, none of it will violate the Basic Law. You can not rule out any possible change or debate, especially when nothing has been put forward yet for consideration.
The fact that nothing can be put forward means they are still trying to find a complex solution that adheres with the Basic Law, rather than coming out to even hint at changing the law. This also means co-location of immigration facilities is not the easy solution.

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
Are you trying to say you have never looked at any of the many studies into Eurostar and the withdrawal of air services? Let alone other European high speed networks. If you want a more Asian viewpoint, there are existing studies in the withdrawal of domestic air services because of the Taiwan's introduction of HSR.
Taiwan's HSR is bleeding money and in dire need of a government bailout. That's hardly a model we should consider.

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
Time savings from not having to travel to Chep Lap Kok, not needing to be at the airport 1 hour early. Waiting at baggage carousel and immigration at the destination airport before the long transfer to the city.
After 1000km, aviation wins against high-speed rail. That means the huge business hubs in Shanghai and Beijing are out of reach from Hong Kong or Guangzhou. No surprise the long-haul train schedules reflect this.

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
With juxtaposed controls, there is only one lineup and queue, as you pass to the second immigration desk immediately after the first immigration desk. Unlike airports with potentially lengthy queues at their respective immigration halls. A proven time saving, simplified process and proven to be popular with business and tourist travellers.
Land crossings can be subject to lengthy waits too even when trains are involved. That's Lowu pretty much all the time. Even security checks and gate entries at major Chinese HSR stations can have nasty long waits.

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
Nothing at the moment violates anything. Also it is not solely about maximising any corporations profits. It is about maximising Legco and the Hong Kong taxpayer's investment.
That also feeds fare revenues into CRH and possibly the MTR's finances. Legco has not adopted a stance that co-location should go ahead because additional revenues would feed the public good.

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
Without juxtaposed controls, the time savings would be worse. You are seemingly limiting your time savings only on HK-GZ train travel, where to Guangzhou South is questionable. Time savings to Futian CBD however is easy to see. Add to that travel to Zhongshan, Baiyun Airport, Huizhou and more, this is hardly irrelevant or ineffective. Long distance travel is well proven with HSR networks world wide and can hardly be argued against.
This has nothing to do with co-location of immigration. The time savings from train travel more than offset immigration formalities at either side of the border. There is no empirical evidence that putting them in 2 different points will be detrimental to patronage.

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
Exactly how, when, what or why? You have closed your mind to any possible argument before it has even begun. There is no legislation proposed to demonstrate one way or the other. Also it is impossible for the Legco to create legislation that violates the Basic Law. So as I said before, anything that is decided upon, whenever that is, will be compliant with the Basic Law.
If Legco advocates for it, the PRC can re-interpret laws to effectively change the substance of the Basic Law. We have seen this happen recently. But if public opinion doesn't stand behind that, the politicians wouldn't take that risk.

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
That is a personal opinion. Can you quantify that? To what degree can you guarantee that all hell will break loose? Which exact rule or regulation are you taking offence at? What part of the legislation does not apply only to WKT and affects the whole of Hong Kong territory? Again you are putting the cart before the horse before anything has been proposed or put in place.
Any violation or attempts to change the Basic Law will trigger a backlash. When the PRC last re-interpreted the Basic Law late last year, there was a huge social backlash, including protests. There is historical precedence with empirical results.

I don't think you have come to grasp that co-location of immigration on Hong Kong soil violates the Basic Law. I suggest you read the Basic Law to understand its contents.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
That is no reason to base your entire beliefs purely on the Guangzhou - Beijing route. Many studies world wide have put HSR more effective with services of around 4 hours maximum, so naturally the Beijing service would not be the healthiest. However there are many more routes that are thriving around the 4 hour mark to Fujian, Guangxi, Hunan, Hubei and more. You can not claim the entire CRH network is facing oblivion.
|Then passengers clear PRC immigration in China and connect to a multitude of services. Having a comprehensive schedule and how to clear immigration are mutually exclusive. Again, there is no empirical evidence that the marginal inconvenience of crossing 2 immigration points in 2 buildings as opposed to 1 to detrimentally and materially affect patronage.

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
The status of One Country Two Systems is not up to you or I. That is for the government of the day to do. You may not agree with them, their views or their behaviour. Your job is ensure that you have most effective government of the day, through the electoral process. You can tell your representative what your views are about any of this matter, however they in turn are entitled to their own opinion and will act accordingly even if it is contrary to your own.
The government is accountable to the people, at least in HK. Unfortunately, we don't get to elect a truly representative government, which is why the rule of law must be defended to keep them in check.

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Originally Posted by Short View Post
At the moment you can not quantify what if any damage is even possible. You are dismissing everything before anything has been proposed. Yes, there are fears but at the moment we do not know what rules and regulations have been proposed for WKT and what safeguards may or may not be in place. There is a possibility to confine the legislation to not just West Kowloon Terminus but solely to the immigration and customs hall within, without effect on any territory outside of the station. It is also to legislate that this also only applies to particular passengers on particular services and not to the wider HK community. It can also legislate that all legal violations, regardless of PRC or HK, all matters are handled under the HK legal system.

The list can be endless, but until anything is actually published and put up for debate, then all arguments are a moot point.
Of course there is damage. There were protests and a drop in confidence towards China after the last re-interpretation was done. Opinion poll after opinion poll showed distrust towards the government and a huge disapproval rating to the top guy in charge. How well-versed are you with these current events?

The people are not stupid. Trying to squeeze a violation of PRC laws by using a generic trespassing law in HK is not going to sit well. HK law enforcement should not be used for another government's political motives. If you can make an exception for the law, no matter how small that piece of land is, what would stop them from extending that to the whole city? More convenience for travel? More usage of infrastructure? More profits? These are horrifying prospects.
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Old March 2nd, 2017, 03:14 PM   #1086
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Just leaving this here:

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarcVD View Post
From the site of the Man in Seat 61 :

---------------quote---------------------

Eurostar to Amsterdam, more details...

Eurostar's planned London-Amsterdam timetable was revealed last year (see last year's news here) and it's now becoming clear how security checks are likely to work in the London-bound direction for the new service, likely to start this coming December - although Eurostar tell me it's still work in progress.

Passengers will indeed check in at their starting stations in the Netherlands, with X-ray & passport checks performed before boarding at Amsterdam Centraal, Schiphol and Rotterdam, so no need to get off before London. In London you'll just walk off the train as you do now. Domestic Benelux passengers will be able to use the train from Amsterdam and Rotterdam to Brussels, they will not need to go through any security or passport checks, but will board half the 900-seat e320 Eurostar set aside for them. Doors between the London-bound and Benelux domestic halves of the train will be locked shut. When the Benelux domestic passengers alight at Brussels, their half of the train will be security-swept before Brussels to London passengers are allowed on. This is the reason behind the 20 minute station stop at Brussels in the inwards direction, which did indeed seem longer than necessary if nothing were being done, but much too short for the equivalent of the 'Lille shuffle' on the Marseille to London Eurostar, where passengers have to alight, go through check-in and re-board.

I have to say this seems an eminently sensible solution, allowing Eurostar to provide a seamless Amsterdam to London service with no need to alight for passport and security checks en route, as some people had feared. It also allows them to provide much-needed capacity between Amsterdam & Brussels given the failure of the Fyra project a few years ago, and to allocate sufficient space to Brussels-London passengers.

---------------end of quote----------------------

Is such a scheme going to work without "sealing off" the platform before and
while the E* train will be in the station ? It seems to me that otherwise, the
check-in controls could easily be defeated. But is there enough capacity in the
stations of Amsterdam, Rotterdam, and Schiphol to do that ?
---

Quote:
Originally Posted by Short View Post
-snip-
Leave him be, there is no persuading those who don't want to be persuaded.

If the project is going to be crippled to near-pointlessness from the very beginning of operations, it's better off dead.

Honestly, if you ask me, if WKT is going to play host to nothing more than shuttle services, they should just bloody damn well stop work on the project right this instant and start upgrading the East Rail Line for 200km/h operation, maybe higher. MTRC can then just plug the tunnels and redevelop the structure as a shopping mall or something. Let it stand as a reminder of what it should have been.

CRH1 or CRH6A trains can be used on the existing Guangzhou through train service, in addition to the existing trains which can run at higher speeds now, and there should be spare space at Hung Hom since the East Rail and West Rail lines are being moved underground as part of the SCL project.
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Old March 3rd, 2017, 11:23 AM   #1087
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luacstjh98 View Post
Just leaving this here:


---



Leave him be, there is no persuading those who don't want to be persuaded.

If the project is going to be crippled to near-pointlessness from the very beginning of operations, it's better off dead.

Honestly, if you ask me, if WKT is going to play host to nothing more than shuttle services, they should just bloody damn well stop work on the project right this instant and start upgrading the East Rail Line for 200km/h operation, maybe higher. MTRC can then just plug the tunnels and redevelop the structure as a shopping mall or something. Let it stand as a reminder of what it should have been.

CRH1 or CRH6A trains can be used on the existing Guangzhou through train service, in addition to the existing trains which can run at higher speeds now, and there should be spare space at Hung Hom since the East Rail and West Rail lines are being moved underground as part of the SCL project.
Yes you are right. We will just have to see what the future of WKT will be.
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Old March 3rd, 2017, 02:22 PM   #1088
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luacstjh98 View Post
Just leaving this here:


---



Leave him be, there is no persuading those who don't want to be persuaded.

If the project is going to be crippled to near-pointlessness from the very beginning of operations, it's better off dead.

Honestly, if you ask me, if WKT is going to play host to nothing more than shuttle services, they should just bloody damn well stop work on the project right this instant and start upgrading the East Rail Line for 200km/h operation, maybe higher. MTRC can then just plug the tunnels and redevelop the structure as a shopping mall or something. Let it stand as a reminder of what it should have been.

CRH1 or CRH6A trains can be used on the existing Guangzhou through train service, in addition to the existing trains which can run at higher speeds now, and there should be spare space at Hung Hom since the East Rail and West Rail lines are being moved underground as part of the SCL project.
Legco already debated the cost overrun and almost stopped the project last year. Then the preliminary schedule and number of stops came out, which surprised lawmakers as well that such an expensive new line would mean marginal time savings.

Last edited by hkskyline; March 3rd, 2017 at 02:29 PM.
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Old March 4th, 2017, 05:23 PM   #1089
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The whole benefit of having the XRL is not just a civil one.

The existing ERL has already removed many freight services in order to run domestic commuter trains. Patronage of the ERL for cross border traffic, especially from the North Eastern NT regions of HK will most likely not travel down to WKT to catch the XRL.

XRL through trains to mainland cities will be required as the time savings for a shuttle service is utterly useless. Co-location of CBP/CQI facilities at WKT is essential for time savings. Failing co-location, a model based on Lille-Europe station can be used at the first mainland city- where people have to de-train, and reboard the train- this is not going to be an effective solution.

The MTR will probably codeshare with CRH services for cities within the PRD, but anything further than that, CRH will probably be running the services. The furthest that the MTR would probably service would most likely be Xiamen.

Cross border commuting and tourism is already the norm for both the PRC and HK, but an extra source of income that the rail companies/govt has not factored in is the ability for foreign tourists to obtain VoA / online approval for PRC visas. If the process was cheaper and quicker, you'd fine foreign tourists will travel to HK and a PRD city in the one trip, just like how it is feasible for people to combine LON/PAR as a triangle routing. Airline code-sharing will also help boost traffic numbers, as WKT is within a 20mins window from HKIA station on the AEL.

I don't agree with the cost blow-outs of the program, but the XRL is here to stay, and I do think that with some creativity, that it can be of benefit to both HK and PRC citizens.
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Old March 6th, 2017, 02:06 PM   #1090
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South China Morning Post Excerpt
Hong Kong lawmaker urges government to come clean on joint immigration arrangements at rail terminus
Pan-democrat Eddie Chu writes to Legislative Council panel requesting a special meeting to scrutinise layout plans for co-located facility in West Kowloon
March 6, 2017

Pressure is mounting on the Hong Kong government to reveal its planned arrangement for setting up a joint immigration facility at the West Kowloon terminus of the HK$84.4 billion express rail link to Guangzhou.

The issue is controversial as mainland Chinese officers would be stationed at the terminus to enforce national laws on Hong Kong soil. Pan-democratic legislators say this would violate the Basic Law.

Lawmaker Eddie Chu Hoi-dick said he had written to the Legislative Council’s transport panel requesting a special meeting to scrutinise the layout plans of the joint immigration facility.

“I demand the government give us a full account on all station designs and projects that are aimed to cater to the joint immigration checkpoint. I also ask the government to arrange site visits as soon as possible,” he said.

He made the appeal on Monday as Chinese-language newspaper Ming Pao published what it said were two revised layout plans for a mainland customs, immigration and quarantine office at the terminus. It includes detention facilities.

The plan needs Legco’s approval because it involves the enactment of local legislation.

The government has so far failed to come up with a proposal for the joint facility, but says negotiations with Beijing have reached a critical stage and it will reveal arrangements before its term ends in late June.

The two layout plans, dated November 2015 and February last year, were said to have been submitted by the MTR Corporation and its consultant to the government’s safety and security coordinating committee for scrutiny.

Under the plans, two floors occupying 92,000 sq ft at the terminus building would be allocated for setting up an office for mainland customs, immigration and quarantine facilities, including a detention centre.

Democratic Party legislator Lam Cheuk-ting said he thought the Hong Kong and mainland authorities had already struck a deal under the table on the co-location of a joint checkpoint at the terminus.

He expressed concern that the co-location arrangement would hurt the “one country, two systems” principle and law and order in Hong Kong. “Given such detailed plans, the government should have consulted the public on whether it welcomed mainland officers exercising law enforcement powers in Hong Kong,” he said.

More : http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/e...me-clean-joint
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Old March 8th, 2017, 08:50 AM   #1091
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High-speed rail link does not need border checks, says top rail engineer]
Wang Mengshu says joint customs and immigration is unnecessary as ‘one country, two systems’ is only transitional in the province of Hong Kong

March 5, 2017
South China Morning Post Excerpt

There should be no border checks on the high speed express rail link between Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Hong Kong, according to a senior mainland rail engineer.

Wang Mengshu, one of China’s top railway construction engineers and a member of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, hit back at criticism in Hong Kong over the arrangement of co-locating immigration and customs facilities for both the mainland and Hong Kong SAR at the future West Kowloon Terminus.

Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying said on Sunday that his administration would try to work out arrangements for co-location of customs, immigration and quarantine facilities for the high-speed rail at West Kowloon Terminus.

“It is our hope that when Hong Kong people use the high-speed rail, they will use it in the most convenient way,” Leung said. “We shall continue [to consult] mainland authorities and hope to work it out as soon as possible. It is difficult. But I and my colleagues will do our best to accomplish it.”

Asked about Wang’s suggestion that border clearance was not needed between the mainland because

Hong Kong was a Chinese province, Leung said: “There have always been border checks, customs clearance and quarantine between Hong Kong and the mainland. The practice will not be dropped only because we have co-location arrangements for the high speed rail.”

Critics say the co-location arrangement would violate the Basic Law and the principle of “one country, two systems” as it would mean mainland officers would be able to enforce mainland customs, immigration and quarantine laws in Hong Kong.
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Old March 9th, 2017, 01:58 PM   #1092
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Victoria Harbour by alfau, on Flickr
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Old March 9th, 2017, 07:10 PM   #1093
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What a beautiful mess, so much is going on!
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Old March 10th, 2017, 01:41 PM   #1094
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South China Morning Post
Mistrust at heart of row over joint immigration checkpoint
Purpose of high-speed rail between Guangzhou and Hong Kong is defeated if travellers have to spend time dealing with two sets of officials
March 7, 2017

Setting up a joint immigration checkpoint at the future West Kowloon terminus for the Guangzhou-Hong Kong express rail link seems to have confounded the greatest legal minds of the government and the opposition.

Our outgoing chief executive, Leung Chun-ying, promised on Sunday to resolve the “difficult” issue before his term ends this summer. I wouldn’t hold my breath. We need to prepare for the very real possibility that there won’t be a satisfactory legal solution to the so-called co-location of customs, immigration and quarantine facilities at the terminus. In that case, add another 30-45 minutes of travel time for having to go through border clearance at two places. That defeats the purpose of having the high-speed rail in the first place.

I am no lawyer, so trying to follow their legal and constitutional arguments is just exasperating. Like most people, I just want a convenient, comfortable and quick way to clear the checkpoint in future travels to the mainland by high-speed rail. Hongkongers have the right to demand that, after paying a whopping HK$84.4 billion for the privilege.

Friendly countries have long worked out the logistics of clearing customs and immigration together without much fuss. Passengers on the Eurostar can go through French and British checkpoints before boarding the train. US immigration officers conduct pre-clearance in at least half a dozen countries.

Pan-democratic barristers love to point out we are not talking about border clearance between two sovereign states but under “one country, two systems”. You would think that should make resolution even easier, but apparently not.

In the end, the real issue is less about legalities under “one country, two systems” and more about trust, or rather the lack of it, between the two sides. Critics fret that mainland officers stationed at West Kowloon may abuse their powers, thereby extending the long arm of Chinese law into the heart of the city. Their argument has been given a boost after the disappearance of five booksellers and a mainland tycoon living in Hong Kong. What if they detain a Hong Kong resident in West Kowloon and threaten to take him back to the mainland? Would the Hong Kong government intervene?

As I say, we may be looking at much longer travel time if that’s what it takes to keep some people happy.
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Old March 11th, 2017, 07:44 AM   #1095
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est opening time?
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Old March 11th, 2017, 08:38 AM   #1096
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Originally Posted by kunming tiger View Post
est opening time?
Q3 2018

http://www.expressraillink.hk/en/pro...formation.html
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Old March 11th, 2017, 11:48 AM   #1097
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SZ-HK HIGH-SPEED RAIL TO GET TEST RUN IN JUNE

Quote:
AN eight-carriage train will begin a range of on-site tests and system integration tests on the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link (XRL) in June.

Hong Kong MTR Corp. (HKMTR) has landed an order of nine XRL trains from CRRC Qingdao Sifang Co. Ltd. (Qingdao Sifang) for the high-speed railway, which is scheduled to start service in 2018.

The first train has completed multiple static tests, low-speed dynamic tests and dynamic testing on the 16-km pilot test section between Shek Kong Emergency Rescue Siding and Mongkok West Ventilation Building. The second train arrived in Hong Kong in January.

According to a Xinhua report Tuesday, quoting Philco Wong, project director of HKMTR, the first train will be tested on the 26-km section between West Kowloon in Hong Kong and Futian Station in Shenzhen.
http://www.szdaily.com/content/2017-...t_15624174.htm
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Old March 12th, 2017, 07:45 PM   #1098
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Looking down on the still to be completed West Kowloon Terminus of the Hong Kong Section of Guangzhou–Shenzhen–Hong Kong Express Rail Link (XRL) by Marcus Wong, on Flickr
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Old March 12th, 2017, 11:08 PM   #1099
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Boy, do I ever feel like a stupid American reading through this thread. Here I was, thinking Shenzhen and Hong Kong are, what, ~20km apart? Should be a simple matter to have passport checks prior to boarding in either direction; build a short high-speed line; job done.

Instead, I walk into the room hearing conversations about no less than national sovereignty. Oi vey.

Suffice to say, knowing that national sovereignty is a big PRC-HK issue, I'd not be surprised if this connection takes a lot longer to bring in to service due to legal reasons, even if the line is physically ready very soon.
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Old March 13th, 2017, 08:41 AM   #1100
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democracy at its finest.
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