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Old February 20th, 2013, 02:09 AM   #2521
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NCT View Post
A lot of these so-called secondary cities are more than half the size of London, and the last time I looked no city has been over provided for by metro compared to international norm.
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City Subway Construction Decelerates in China

...

In some cities, though, enthusiasm for the urban railway building went too far.

For example, rail lines were built where few people live on the outskirts of the Hunan Province city of Changsha, said Wang Chengli, an urban transit professor at the city's Central South University. Today, exit gates for some of the city's finished subway stations lead to farm fields.

...
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Old February 20th, 2013, 04:13 AM   #2522
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Secondly, I never said that metros were unnecessary. But that you don't need one everywhere and metros won't alleviate traffic nightmares (as Beijing will find out) because they're usually planned to connect nodes. That's what they're meant to do and that's how they work. I'm not saying no cities should build them, but that in many cases other modes would suffice.
I see the "subway only" build out as a positive because there is so many corridors in China that desperately need a subway. LRT is not going to cut it. Apart from tier 1 cities most recent subway openings in tier 2 and lower cities are their first or second line. If your a city of ~5 mil your first line will be down the main streets and connecting a lot of your major attractions and districts. In other words it will usually be in areas of great need to transit and when you are a 5 mil metro region with Chinese densities and commuting habits you better make it a subway. If it was the 2nd tier city's 9th line then I would be a little worried but we are not at that point right now.

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Originally Posted by phoenixboi08 View Post
Considering the vast majority of these systems end up having budget short falls (because it's priced as a Public Service not a Private Good), it should give some of these officials a little pause. Other modes can be just as effective and are much cheaper to maintain.
That is sounding oddly similar to that caxin article posted awhile back. Look at it this way, if a vast majority of the systems where built to the cheaper LRT/BRT method now packed and overloaded will the lines be in 5 years? Nowadays cost-effectiveness metrics are so skewed because they omit social environmental, and (very important in China's case) future costs/future-proofing considerations.

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when I say that every city wants a metro usually only because it will make them look "modern," not always because it's entirely sensible to build a 10+ kilometer tunnel under a city that could be more adequately served with BRT/Light Rail.
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It is simply par for the course for any city in China to pine for a metro because it will make them seem "modern," when in most cases improved services of what they already have would be more [cost] effective.
The view that mayors/officials have about subways being "modern" is a good one so far. I say this because even though every mayor in China wants their city to get the status of having a metro so far only the biggest cities get the green light. Out of all the cities in China with metros U/C (like actually digging stuff) Xuzhou is the smallest with a metro pop of 2.8mil (all according to wikipedia) in Europe/Japan/South Korea that's not really that big a deal. It might look like some building craze but its actually fairly controlled and reasonable.

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i.e. the district where Shanghai is trying this out, doesn't warrant them building a huge new metro line. It's ridiculous to continue doing that.
It's all about corridor selection, context and conditions if the corridor was more built up (i.e like the one where line 8 is running that is parallel to the proposed BRT) then the district would have opted for a subway.

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wasn't this posted before somewhere else?
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Old February 20th, 2013, 06:41 AM   #2523
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It's all about corridor selection, context and conditions if the corridor was more built up (i.e like the one where line 8 is running that is parallel to the proposed BRT) then the district would have opted for a subway.
That's what I was trying to get at the first go around.

I never meant to imply that metros shouldn't be built, or that somehow, a city under 2 million (or whatever metric) shouldn't have one. Just that it isn't the end-all-be-all. The thinking used to be very much that way (i.e. many cities that didn't meet the "qualifications" for subways were fudging their numbers to get sanctioned by Beijing).

I'm glad that alternatives are now being employed in China when they are needed and it isn't always "build a new line." That was all I meant.
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Old February 20th, 2013, 08:16 AM   #2524
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Originally Posted by phoenixboi08 View Post
Firstly, please don't do employ that "cheap" meme that "Americans don't take transit/enjoy suburban development" thing... It's highly childish. I never insinuated that, and am insulted that you went there. I mean, come on, you're practically forcing words down my throat.

Secondly, I never said that metros were unnecessary. But that you don't need one everywhere and metros won't alleviate traffic nightmares (as Beijing will find out) because they're usually planned to connect nodes. That's what they're meant to do and that's how they work. I'm not saying no cities should build them, but that in many cases other modes would suffice.

If you've been to China, which I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you have, you'll understand when I say that every city wants a metro usually only because it will make them look "modern," not always because it's entirely sensible to build a 10+ kilometer tunnel under a city that could be more adequately served with BRT/Light Rail.

Considering the vast majority of these systems end up having budget short falls (because it's priced as a Public Service not a Private Good), it should give some of these officials a little pause. Other modes can be just as effective and are much cheaper to maintain.
Why do you think metros are not necessary for a large city of 7+ million people to alleviate traffic? Beijing has been building metros over the past few years. They're not yet at the stage where metro ridership can effectively cut traffic jams yet, but I think Beijing's traffic would be far worse without the existing metro network.

We also see in recent years, new metros have been popular. I have ridden on the Xian and Nanjing metros myself in 2012 to give that assessment.

Keep in mind budget shortalls are expected since cities have taken on a lot of debt to build metros, and the interest payments alone in the first years and growing pains can easily wipe out passenger revenues. We don't see many profitable metros around the world anyway, so if you think a loss-making metro is a failure, then much of the West would fall into that category.

Bus and trams are cheaper to build and maintain, but they are not a good long-term transport solution for a very large city.

Please provide real examples of cities with small populations (and define what small is) that are building metros which you think are not necessary. Keep in mind a secondary city like Chongqing is home to 30 million people.
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Old February 20th, 2013, 11:03 AM   #2525
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Is China still rapidly urbanising, or has that begun to slow down?

Considering just how big those second tier cities could be within another ten years, it makes perfect sense to build rail now. With over a billion people, the possibility of car ownership and use levels equalling that of the USA is just scary.

Building metros is just future proofing, clear and simple. It's what the USA should be doing too if only it didn't have so many financial/lobby group issues.
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Old February 20th, 2013, 04:10 PM   #2526
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New Metro projects to benefit suburbs
Shanghai Daily
Feb 20, 2013

THE city this year will begin construction on two Metro lines, the planned Line 17 and the southern extension of Line 5, picking up the pace of subway expansion to serve suburban areas.

Five new lines or sections are now under construction, officials said.

Metro Line 17, running west part of the city, will connect the Hongqiao Transport Hub and suburban Qingpu District. Its stops will include the water town of Zhujiajiao, a popular tourism site, and the Oriental Land campsite, according to plans. It will have about 14 stations over 35 kilometers.

The extension of Line 5 will stretch south from the current stations to Fengxian District, including nine new stations. It is expected to reach the bay area later.

The traffic authorities also said yesterday that 12 stations of the second phase of Metro Line 11 are expected to be put into use this year.

The city has 12 lines in service, with more than 425 kilometers of subway track. The length will increase to more than 600 kilometers by 2015.

More than 36 percent of local commuters used the Metro routinely last year.
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Old February 20th, 2013, 04:13 PM   #2527
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Quote:
Originally Posted by city_thing View Post
Is China still rapidly urbanising, or has that begun to slow down?

Considering just how big those second tier cities could be within another ten years, it makes perfect sense to build rail now. With over a billion people, the possibility of car ownership and use levels equalling that of the USA is just scary.

Building metros is just future proofing, clear and simple. It's what the USA should be doing too if only it didn't have so many financial/lobby group issues.
Urbanization set to boost growth
Updated: 2013-02-19 07:59
China Daily

Official statistics show that China's urbanization rate, indicated by the ratio of urban residents to the total population, had risen to 52.57 percent by the end of 2012 from 51 percent in 2011. However, that is still much lower than the average of 80 percent in fully developed economies.

Wang Guoping, director of the Hangzhou International Urbanology Research Center, said urbanization will create huge domestic demand and boost economic growth.

"The transformation of the growth pattern should be related to the development of the urban regions.

"Urbanization is also an important way of improving modern industrialization, so it is one of the key elements for sustainable development," he said.

China's new leadership has pledged to double GDP by 2020 compared with the 2010 figure. Urbanization will be one of the four main driving forces in achieving that goal, with others including industrialization and the modernization of the agricultural sector.

After the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, Vice-Premier Li Keqiang said the urbanization process is expected to accelerate in the next decade, which will boost domestic investment and consumption as more members of the rural population move into towns and cities.

Huang Yiping, chief China economist at Barclay's Capital, said the key task of urbanization should be to integrate migrant workers into the cities while simultaneously developing a modern agricultural sector, rather than embarking on a new wave of poorly planned infrastructure investment.

"In our view, while urbanization creates demand, it is industrialization and the accompanying rise in productivity that creates supply and which will ultimately determine China's potential growth, especially amid a shrinking labor force and slower capital accumulation," said Huang.

"The government is expected to be careful when allocating fiscal spending as it carries out the new urbanization plans," he added.

Some analysts have predicted that by the end of 2020, China's urbanization rate is likely to rise to 60 percent of the population

Chen Xiwen, director of the Office of the Central Committee's Leading Group on Rural Work, warned that one precondition for urbanization should be ensuring a sufficient and stable supply of agricultural produce, which will require improved efficiency in agricultural production, based on advanced technology and management.

"In addition, the provision of housing, social security and education for migrant workers and their children once they settle in the cities, will also present problems that must be solved during the urbanization process," he said.
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Old February 20th, 2013, 04:29 PM   #2528
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That's what I was trying to get at the first go around.
But most if not all of the corridors in question as of 2013 warrant a subway. City officials are clearly not doing their job if their first plan is the build a secondary network on secondary corridors before serving the core primary areas. Once most the major corridors in china are served by subway (lets just say 2015) then you will see an explosion of LRT/BRT to fill in the gaps. Beijing and Shanghai are rapidly approaching this point.

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Originally Posted by phoenixboi08 View Post
I never meant to imply that metros shouldn't be built, or that somehow, a city under 2 million (or whatever metric) shouldn't have one. Just that it isn't the end-all-be-all. The thinking used to be very much that way (i.e. many cities that didn't meet the "qualifications" for subways were fudging their numbers to get sanctioned by Beijing).

I'm glad that alternatives are now being employed in China when they are needed and it isn't always "build a new line." That was all I meant.
The issue I see here is that even with so many metro systems in China toady and in the coming years; China will still be behind the west in metro system reach. With the population of both North America and Europe combined you would at think there would be at least ~75 metro systems. So the "build a new line" method will probably help China, that being said if a "village" of 300,000 proposes a metro I'm pretty sure everyone in the CCP will call it out.

Last edited by saiho; February 20th, 2013 at 04:45 PM.
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Old February 21st, 2013, 04:26 AM   #2529
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City to improve public transport
Shanghai Daily
Feb 21, 2013

THE Shanghai government will continue to improve public transportation to ease traffic congestion in the city.

The plan calls for opening more bus-only lanes and further expanding the Metro network while also adding more parking spaces, officials said yesterday.

"Shanghai's public transport network will see an upgrade with three new subway lines or extensions going into service this year," said Qin Yun, chief engineer of the Shanghai Transport and Construction Commission.

Qin added that rising Metro passenger volumes and operational safety have placed stress on the subway network, which handles an average of 6 million passengers per day.

Although more residents are turning to the subway each day to get around the city, vehicle traffic has seen little improvement due to the increase in private car ownership and bad driving habits.

The commission said it will encourage more people to take the bus to and from work by adding bus-only lanes and giving buses shorter waits at traffic lights.

The city already has more than 160 kilometers of bus-only lanes and this is expected to reach 300 kilometers within five years.

Traffic authorities earlier warned that "drivers will face more severe road congestion and commuters will see more crowded subway carriages this year" as they struggle to keep pace with the city's economic development.

The commission said it is also working on the parking problem.

Government advisers suggested underground and civil-defense structures be renovated to create more parking spaces. The downtown area has more than 780,000 public parking spaces, but planners say 1.14 million are needed.
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Old February 21st, 2013, 09:13 AM   #2530
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But most if not all of the corridors in question as of 2013 warrant a subway. City officials are clearly not doing their job if their first plan is the build a secondary network on secondary corridors before serving the core primary areas.
It actually makes some sense.

Since suburbs are rapidly growing, it is good for futureproofing if the subways could be built in empty countryside cheaply and quickly, before the land gets built up. This way the stations and crossings will be in place in empty fields and suburbs built around existing lines and stations. Even worse, the peasants do not own their fields and can be dispossessed relatively quickly, whereas the bourgeois do own their houses, and in China without eminent domain can hold up infrastructure from their nail houses. So building branch lines is relatively cheap now but will get expensive fast - whereas digging tunnels under the built up cores is expensive and slow and can be delayed till the city gets even richer.

This does have some problems, though.
Building lines even in empty suburbs does cost something. And they are liable to be poorly used for some time - first because they run in empty countryside, and then after the suburbs get built, some more time because the lines in central core are not yet completed and the traffic is gridlocked at the central end of the line.
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Once most the major corridors in china are served by subway (lets just say 2015) then you will see an explosion of LRT/BRT to fill in the gaps. Beijing and Shanghai are rapidly approaching this point.
They should also expand their trolleybuses to fill the said gaps
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So the "build a new line" method will probably help China, that being said if a "village" of 300,000 proposes a metro I'm pretty sure everyone in the CCP will call it out.
Which is the most populous village in China?

The most populous towns are Changan and Humen, and they are IMO overdue for metro service.

But villages (cun)?

The richest village is generally acknowledged to be Huaxi, somewhere in Jiangyin, and they do afford some extravagant things, like a supertall for Farmers Apartments. Yet I think Huaxi itself is slightly too small to justify a metro inside the village, somewhat like Macao.

But how about Huaxi Village investing in a metro line to Jiangyin central city subdistricts?
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Old February 22nd, 2013, 04:15 AM   #2531
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It actually makes some sense.

Since suburbs are rapidly growing, it is good for futureproofing if the subways could be built in empty countryside cheaply and quickly, before the land gets built up. This way the stations and crossings will be in place in empty fields and suburbs built around existing lines and stations. Even worse, the peasants do not own their fields and can be dispossessed relatively quickly, whereas the bourgeois do own their houses, and in China without eminent domain can hold up infrastructure from their nail houses. So building branch lines is relatively cheap now but will get expensive fast - whereas digging tunnels under the built up cores is expensive and slow and can be delayed till the city gets even richer.
What I ment by a secondary network on secondary corridors is that a secondary network (i.e a tram or LRT) built in existing lesser known roads in an existing urban area before a subway is even being planned on the major ones.

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This does have some problems, though.
Building lines even in empty suburbs does cost something. And they are liable to be poorly used for some time - first because they run in empty countryside, and then after the suburbs get built, some more time because the lines in central core are not yet completed and the traffic is gridlocked at the central end of the line.
That's not the biggest issue IMO. My gripe is that I see a lot of metros being built underground in the rural areas when a elevated alignment is much more cost effective; there are no NIMBYs to complain the metro is already there. But noooooo, government officials want to build more upper middle class condo "paradises" that no one can afford.

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They should also expand their trolleybuses to fill the said gaps
They'll just get stuck in traffic
but if you put them in their own lane... thats just called BRT

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The most populous towns are Changan and Humen, and they are IMO overdue for metro service.
Dongguang is cooking up metro line R1 to serve some of Changan and Humen and there is the Guangzhou-Dongguang-Shenzhen RTS line.
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Old February 22nd, 2013, 12:54 PM   #2532
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Agree. Shanghai itself and china overall have to consider building lots of tram / LRT lines in the cities. It's really strange to see in Shanghai a very good subway, which is more like a heavy rail, and only buses. Nothing in between.
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Old February 22nd, 2013, 05:55 PM   #2533
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What I ment by a secondary network on secondary corridors is that a secondary network (i.e a tram or LRT) built in existing lesser known roads in an existing urban area before a subway is even being planned on the major ones.
Plenty of cities have no need for metro, but do need trams. Plenty of suburbs, too.
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That's not the biggest issue IMO. My gripe is that I see a lot of metros being built underground in the rural areas when a elevated alignment is much more cost effective; there are no NIMBYs to complain the metro is already there. But noooooo, government officials want to build more upper middle class condo "paradises" that no one can afford.
Emphatically agreed - elevated lines are cheaper than tunnels.

Rails on ground or embankments are even cheaper, but then the building under passes can get messy - elevated lines come with underpasses included.

Another option is to build initially low frequency commuter railway lines, with provision to increase frequency to metro levels.
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They'll just get stuck in traffic
but if you put them in their own lane... thats just called BRT
Even when they have contact lines?
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Old February 23rd, 2013, 03:38 AM   #2534
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Another option is to build initially low frequency commuter railway lines, with provision to increase frequency to metro levels.
Something I wish they did but whatever they will probably start doing that when money gets tight.

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Even when they have contact lines?
yes see Quito's Trolley Bus system
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Old February 23rd, 2013, 09:33 AM   #2535
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Plenty of cities have no need for metro, but do need trams. Plenty of suburbs, too.

Emphatically agreed - elevated lines are cheaper than tunnels.

Rails on ground or embankments are even cheaper, but then the building under passes can get messy - elevated lines come with underpasses included.

Another option is to build initially low frequency commuter railway lines, with provision to increase frequency to metro levels.
The point is that Shaghai's core is extremely dense. Rail transport should be definitely isolated from all other traffic. So, onground lines are not a solution as it will be constantly disturbed by cars, trucks etc.

What do you mean by commuter railway lines and what would be their difference from existing subway lines many of which are elevated outside the very center? Just take into account that many metro trains in Shanghai metro are 140 meters long and those on lines 1 and 2 are 190! This is not at all European metro standards. So, I don't clearly see what you mean by commuter rails since existing metro lines go far away to rural communities.
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Old February 23rd, 2013, 09:49 AM   #2536
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Something I wish they did but whatever they will probably start doing that when money gets tight.
Compare Yamanote line.

Built piecemeal from 1885 to 1925, as mainline railway bypass. The east side of the loop IS the main trunk Tokaido and Tohoku lines.

29 stations over 34,5 km. Average station distance 1200 m, longest 2200 m, shortest 500 m. They are planning to fix that 2200 m, and add 30th station.

Speed - full loop made in 56 minutes. Meaning average speed 37 km/h, and average less than 2 minutes per stop, inclusive of dwell time.

The line uses 11 car trainsets, 20 m per car, so the 220+ m platforms span at least 6,4 km of the total 34,5 km length, and the 500 m distance between stops means less than 280 m between platforms.

Headways at rush hours are 2,5 minutes. Meaning up to 23 trains on the loop at the same time.

At a rush hour, each station is served by 264 cars per hour.

Reflect on the fact that Yamanote Line was laid out back in 1885.

How many stations do you think should Shanghai-Beijing railway line have between Shanghai station and Anting... I suppose Anting does have an old railway station? How many stations exist between Shanghai and Kunshan (the old railway station)?
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Old February 23rd, 2013, 10:02 AM   #2537
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Well 500 meters distance while the train is 200 m long seems a little bit strange. Shanghai doesn't need such small distances for metro or heavy rail lines. But it is ok for LRT. And I still don't understand why Shanghai and China do not develop this kind of public transport.
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Old February 23rd, 2013, 10:56 AM   #2538
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Well 500 meters distance while the train is 200 m long seems a little bit strange. Shanghai doesn't need such small distances for metro or heavy rail lines. But it is ok for LRT.
Then what distances DOES Shanghai need for metro stations?

Paris Metro is famous for short station distances. Line 4 is 10,6 km long with 26 stations - meaning 424 m average distance.

This way, the destinations are at a walking distance from metro stations, so people will not need cars or buses to get where they want. But the problem is, with all the stops Paris Metro is slow, at about 20 km/h average.
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Old February 23rd, 2013, 11:05 AM   #2539
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Paris metro is an exception and in my opinion a bit of an overkill. 700-800 m between stations, a bit closer in the center and a bit further in distant suburbs, is the standard arrangement in European subway systems.
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Old February 23rd, 2013, 11:33 AM   #2540
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Then what distances DOES Shanghai need for metro stations?

Paris Metro is famous for short station distances. Line 4 is 10,6 km long with 26 stations - meaning 424 m average distance.

This way, the destinations are at a walking distance from metro stations, so people will not need cars or buses to get where they want. But the problem is, with all the stops Paris Metro is slow, at about 20 km/h average.
That's in part the answer to your question. Shanghai metro should keep its distances in 1500 - 2000 meters brackets with some exceptions for sure. Since the city is really big in comparison with Paris, which you mention here, short distances between stations would be a disadvantage.

However, Shanghai has to develop a huge and maybe dense LRT system in addition to metro.

Paris metro is absolutely inconvenient for Shanghai since passengers usually travel more than 10 km.
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