Railway boom hits Yangtze River Delta

2024-03-05 09:21:38China Daily Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download

The Yangtze River Delta region is looking forward to a 140 billion yuan ($19.5 billion) investment boom in railway construction this year, including Shanghai's East Railway Station, which will be the second-largest transport hub in the city, official sources said.

"This is highly likely to hit a record high," a staff member at China Railway Shanghai Group was quoted as saying in a report by the Shanghai Observer news portal on Sunday.

The new projects will cover the extension and development of 32 key programs, the source said.

Last year's investment in railway construction in the region totaled 125.3 billion yuan.

The East Railway Station is one of the key projects focused on high-quality development and the integration of the Yangtze River Delta region.

Known as the eastern hub, the project is an integrated transportation hub about 5 kilometers from Shanghai Pudong International Airport's Terminal 1. Situated in the Pudong New Area, the project will occupy an area of about 1 square kilometer.

Once completed it will be Shanghai's second-largest transportation hub after Hongqiao.

The State Council, China's Cabinet, gave in principle approval to the general plan for building the eastern hub international business cooperation zone last month.

To better exert Shanghai's strengths in opening-up, the plan should be implemented based on the city's existing status as an international aviation hub, making good use of the institutional innovative achievements of the China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone, creating a highly convenient vehicle for international business communications, better connecting domestic and international markets, so as to make greater contribution in promoting high level opening-up, the State Council said.

Based on Shanghai's East Railway Station, the project will combine transportation functions of aviation, national railway, urban railway and metro together to facilitate the integration of the Yangtze River Delta region, serve Pudong New Area's goal of playing a leading role in China's journey to build a modern socialist country, and accelerate Shanghai's efforts to forge a socialist modern international metropolis with global influence, according to the city government's Information Office.

The Yangtze River Delta region has formed one of the nation's most developed and sophisticated high-speed railway networks. By the end of last year it had more than 7,100 km of high-speed railway lines.

As the railway network extends to more cities across the region, a life circle within one to three hours of railway travel is taking shape.

The railway network is projected to reach 16,700 km by the end of next year, including some 9,200 km of high-speed railway lines, according to the development plan for the Yangtze River Delta region's railway networks.

While the plan for Shanghai's eastern hub is well underway, various new programs are being carried out thanks to coordinated efforts by cities and provinces in the region.

In Jiangsu province, a number of major railway projects with a combined budget of more than 175 billion yuan are under construction at an accelerated pace. More than 4,500 km of railway networks are in operation across the province, including over 2,500 km of high-speed railway lines.

A railway network of 3,989 km had been formed in Zhejiang province by the end of last year, reaching all major cities with the exception of the Zhoushan islands.

In Anhui province, a 5,501 km railway network, including 2,537 km of high-speed railway lines, has greatly enhanced people's travel experience and improved the local business environment.

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