Friday, August 15, 2008

Suzhou plans elevated Metro to Shanghai

SHANGHAI and Suzhou could become the first cities in the country to be linked by elevated Metro lines, according to urban planners in the Jiangsu Province city.

The S1 and S2B lines in Suzhou, which should be completed by 2020 if approved by the central government, are expected to connect to extensions of Shanghai's Metro Line 2 and Metro Line 11 in Qingpu and Jiading districts, the Suzhou Urban Planning Bureau says in its 2007-2020 Traffic Blueprint.

The two lines are part of the Jiangsu city's plans that include several new railway lines.

The S1 elevated Metro line will first connect to a station on the Shanghai-Nanjing railway currently under construction and stretch eastward to pass Jiangsu's Kunshan city before splitting in two.

One section will head east through Taicang City in Jiangsu to join Shanghai's Metro Line 11 in Jiading, the Oriental Morning Post reported, citing Wang Hao, a senior official with the Suzhou bureau.

The other section will go to Jiangsu's Huaqiao Town and then link up with the north extension of Shanghai's Metro Line 11 at Anting Station.

The S2B line will head to a station on the planned Suzhou-Jiading intercity rail line and go east to join up with the extension of Shanghai's Metro Line 2 in Qingpu District.

The 300-kilometer Shanghai-Nanjing railway, which began construction on July 1, starts from Shanghai and will go through the cities of Suzhou, Wuxi, Changzhou, Zhenjiang before ending in Nanjing.

The 1,318-kilometer Shanghai-Beijing high-speed railway, China's biggest construction project since 1949, will have 21 stations across seven provinces and municipalities. Construction began in April 18 this year.

The Suzhou blueprint also proposes three intercity railway lines, including Suzhou to Jiaxing, Wuxi to Jiading and Suzhou to Nantong.

The Suzhou-Jiaxing line will connect with both the Shanghai-Beijing high-speed railway and the Shanghai-Nanjing railway.

Part of the Suzhou-Jiaxing line will be built underground in order to protect the environment. It will be the first partially-underground railway in China, Wang said.

The Wuxi-Jiading railway line, passing through Changshu and Taicang, will connect some counties that the Shanghai-Nanjing railway does not service.

The Sutong railway is expected to become the second link between Suzhou and Nantong city after the opening of Suzhou-Nantong Bridge on June 30.

Suzhou also plans to build a third Metro line to offer passengers speedy travel from Suzhou to Shuofang Airport in Wuxi City, Wang said.


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