New rail to link Bei­jing, He­bei

The high-speed rail­way is ex­pected to be com­pleted by 2020, with trains trav­el­ing up to 350 km per hour

China Daily (USA) - - CHINA - By DUJUAN dujuan@chi­

China’s top eco­nomic plan­ner has ap­proved a high-speed rail project con­nect­ing Bei­jing’s Tongzhou dis­trict, the newhome to most city gov­ern­ment agen­cies, and the in­dus­trial city of Tang­shan in neigh­bor­ingHe­bei prov­ince.

Jing­tang In­ter­city Rail­way Co has gained ap­proval from the Na­tional De­vel­op­ment and Re­form Com­mis­sion to build the 148.7-kilo­me­ter rail project with a to­tal in­vest­ment of 44.9 bil­lion yuan ($6.58 bil­lion), ac­cord­ing to a state­ment posted on the com­mis­sion’s web­site.

The project is a sig­nif­i­cant el­e­ment of the Bei­jing-Tian­jin-He­bei in­te­grated de­vel­op­ment plan, as the in­fra­struc­ture con­nec­tiv­ity will be ben­e­fi­cial to re­gional eco­nomic growth and make full use of tourist resources along the route.

The rail­way is ex­pected to be com­pleted by 2020. The trains will travel at speeds of be­tween 200 km per hour and 350 km/h and stop at eight sta­tions in cities in­clud­ing Tian­jin, and Lang­fang and Tang­shan in He­bei.

Jingjinji In­ter­city In­vest­ment Co, one of the two share­hold­ers of Jing­tang In­ter­city Rail­way, will fund half of the de­vel­op­ment costs, while the other half will be paid us­ing bank loans.

To re­coup its out­lay faster, Jingjinji In­ter­city In­vest­ment plans to de­velop the land around Tongzhou sta­tion by in­vest­ing in com­mer­cial and res­i­den­tial real es­tate, Caixin On­line, a do­mes­tic fi­nan­cial and busi­ness news me­dia out­let, quoted Zhang Yong, the com­pany’s deputy gen­eral man­ager, as say­ing.

In order to help the cap­i­tal city func­tion more ef­fi­ciently as well as ease traf­fic con­ges­tion and air pol­lu­tion, the au­thor­ity de­cided to build Tongzhou, a less-de­vel­oped dis­trict 20 km from the city cen­ter, as the sub­cen­ter of the city.

Cai Qi, act­ing and deputy mayor of Bei­jing, vis­ited Tongzhou onNov 4 to as­sess the progress of sub­cen­ter’s con­struc­tion, lis­ten­ing to lo­cal of­fi­cials’ re­ports on in­fra­struc­ture, in­vest­ment and ed­u­ca­tion in Tongzhou. It was Cai’s first visit since be­ing ap­pointed to his cur­rent role on Oct 31.

In July last year, au­thor­i­ties an­nounced that they will move the ma­jor­ity of Bei­jing gov­ern­ment agen­cies from crowded down­town ar­eas to the dis­trict by the end of 2017.

Yang Bin, head of Tongzhou, said the dis­trict will speed up the process of elim­i­nat­ing low-end in­dus­tries and up­grade its in­dus­trial struc­ture, adding that cre­at­ing a green en­vi­ron­ment will be the fo­cus of its de­vel­op­ment.

Ac­cord­ing to a rail­way con­struc­tion plan for Bei­jing-Tian­jin-He­bei re­leased last year by a de­sign unit of China Rail­way Corp, 24 in­ter­city rail­ways around Bei­jing, Tian­jin and Shi­ji­azhuang, cap­i­tal of He­bei prov­ince, will be com­pleted by 2050, eight of which will be fin­ished by 2020.

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