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China to have 1,700 km of urban rail lines by 2015
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Urban rail transportation would play an increasingly important role in public transportation in Chinese cities, said an official.

Fifteen major cities, including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, have planned the construction of more than 60 urban rail lines recently, Liu Shijin, vice director of Development Research Center of the State Council, said at a forum on urbanization and rail transportation in Beijing on Friday.

A larger 72 percent of the scheduled new lines are subway projects, 10 percent are light rail, and 8 percent are other rail systems, said Liu, saying that the proportion of urban rail transit would further grow.

China plans to expand its urban rail transit route to 1,700 kilometers by 2015, according to construction layouts of China's 15 cities, including Beijing and Shanghai.

The figure grew from 43 km to 730 km from 1995 to 2008.

Urban rail transportation would be an effective way to solve the traffic congestion in roads of the large populous cities in China, said Liu.

(Xinhua News Agency November 8, 2008)

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