Monday, April 29, 2013
By Jim CameronSpecial to WestportNow
Time for a quick update on the good and not-so good news about high-speed rail around the world:
China: The high-speed train between Beijing and Shanghai just passed the 100-million passenger ridership mark after less than two years of operations. The sleek trains depart every 15 minutes carrying 1,00-plus passengers at 200-plus mph, covering the 819 mile distance (comparable to New York to Atlanta) in four hours.
China also recently opened a new 1,400-mile long high speed line from Beijing to Guangzhou (comparable to New York to Key West, Fla.). Travel time, eight hours. That puts high speed rail just 100 miles from Hong Kong.
United States.: America’s fastest train, Acela, while a tinker toy compared to true high-speed rail in China and Europe, is becoming a victim of its own success. Acela has captured more than 50 percent of the New York to DC and New York to Boston market with hourly departures but an average speed of only 75 mph.
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