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Beijing-Tianjin Express Railway Expected by Political Advisors
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Chinese political advisors from Tianjin are hoping that an intercity express passenger railway between the major port city in north China and the national capital of Beijing will boost the development of the municipality.

Members of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) from Tianjin, who are arriving here for the annual session of the country's top political advisory body slated to open on March 3, said they are glad to hear that the railway will start operation next year.

The intercity railway, scheduled to be completed in 2008, will help boost economic cooperation between Tianjin and Beijing, and bring people in the two cities closer, said CPPCC National Committee member Bao Jingling, chief engineer of the Tianjin Environmental Protection Science Research Institute.

The current two traffic alternatives between Tianjin and Beijing can no longer well serve the cooperation and exchanges between the cities, said CPPCC National Committee member Liang Yanjun.

The design of the Beijing-Tianjin expressway now cannot meet the demand from the increasing road traffic flux between the cities, and the lack of city metros that connect the railway station in Tianjin seems to have offset the speed of the current intercity passenger train, Liang said.

When the 115-km express railway is completed, the trains are expected to be able to ride at a speed of 350 km per hour, shortening the trip between the two cities to less than half an hour from the current 80 minutes.

In 2010, the railway will be linked to subway networks of the two cities.

The construction of the intercity railway started in July 2005, with an estimated total cost of 12.34 billion yuan (US$1.56 billion).
(Xinhua News Agency March 3, 2007)

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