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Subway-Electric Tram Hybrid, the First Of Its Kind in China, to Open in Foshan

Posted: 06/25/2014 11:03 am

foshan subway hybrid public transportationA public transportation line currently being developed in the Nanhai District of Foshan is being touted as the first of its kind in China, reports Nanhai Today.

Construction has begun on five stations of the passenger line described as a cross between a subway and a electric tram with the advantages of both, said a spokesperson for the New Transportation Office.

The planned line will have 13 stops of which four are underground, four are above ground, and five will be elevated stations. As explained by the spokesman, travel on the light railway won’t be affected by surface traffic from either congestion or accidental collisions, leading to loftier ambitions for the line:

Our entire plan is to follow the principles of “using the original route as much as possible, reduce the need to forcibly relocate residents, reduce the need for land space, use land routes where possible, switch to elevated tracks when that is not feasible, and finally resort to underground routes when all other options fail.”

The line will be 13.11 km long, and will have four transfer stations:

  • A Chongleigang Park Station that will connect with the Jiangzhu transport line serving Guangzhou and Foshan
  • A Foshan First Ring Road Station that will connect with Jiangzhu transport line serving Guangzhou and Foshan
  • A Tangyi Park Station that will connect with Foshan Metro Line 6
  • A Linyue West Station will connect with Foshan Metro Line 2

The line was first proposed in 2011 and construction began last year, although there have been multiple setbacks. Development has recently been hampered from issues stemming from the forced relocations of the Xiaxi and Pingdong neighborhoods, and from accommodating high-voltage power lines.

foshan subway hybrid public transportationPhotos: Weibo


Guangzhou destroys two heritage buildings from the 1940s, despite protests

Posted: 06/14/2013 10:00 am

Two buildings on Guangzhou’s Shishu Road which represent a rare form of architecture were leveled on the morning of June 11 in spite of locals having written to the government to protest, Xinhua reports. Both were built during the Republic of China period in the 1940s.

The demolition crew in action, courtesy of Xinhua

The buildings were said by experts to represent a form of architecture that mixed the ancient with the modern and is extremely rare. The type of architecture was even described as being as important to China’s cultural heritage as the panda.

Historically significant buildings being demolished in the name of development is, of course, nothing new.

Philip Pan described the process in his 2008 book, Out of Mao’s Shadow:

In reality, though, local officials often approved projects and sold land-use rights to developers without going through the trouble of buying or seizing them from homeowners first. Officials then conspired with developers to pressure owners to give up their land. Developers often hired thugs to intimidate residents while police looked the other way. And local authorities sometimes cut off water, electricity, or heat to the holdouts. If necessary, the government intervened on behalf of developers and ordered a forced eviction on questionable legal grounds. Altogether, between 1991 and 2003, more than half a million families in Beijing were evicted by developers.

This has given rise to the coinage of the term “chaina,” which sounds like the English word “China” but means “Where should we demolish next?”

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