China to complete railway skirting largest desert

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, June 16, 2022
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Aerial photo taken on Sept. 27, 2021 shows a section of the Hotan-Ruoqiang Railway under construction in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. [Photo/Xinhua]

A railroad in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region will begin operation on Thursday, completing a 2,712-km railway line looping around China's largest desert, the Taklamakan, said the China State Railway Group Co., Ltd. (China Railway) Wednesday.

The 825-km railroad stretches eastward from Hotan City to Ruoqiang County along the southern edge of the Taklamakan, the world's second-largest shifting-sand desert, with 65 percent of its length inside the desert. Its construction started in December 2018.

Five bridges extending 49.7 km in total lift the railroad to protect it against sandstorms, said the China Railway.

The opening of the railroad will enable trains to skirt a desert full circle for the first time in the world, said the China Railway. It will also facilitate traveling and logistics of Xinjiang specialties including cotton, walnuts, dates, and minerals.

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