China Considers Bullet Train to ... US?

Report in state-run newspaper says plans are under discussion
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 10, 2014 11:17 AM CDT
China Considers Bullet Train to ... US?
A passenger walks past a high-speed train at a railway station in Nanjing in eastern China's Jiangsu province.   (AP Photo)

China is big on bullet trains, but a report in the state-run Beijing Times would raise the bar in astonishing fashion: It says China is considering a bullet train to the US. China Daily sums up the Chinese-language original, which say the train would start in northeast China, cross Siberia, follow a 125-mile tunnel under the Bering Strait to reach Alaska, then cut across Canada to the continental US. The two-day trip at an average speed of about 225mph would cover about 8,000 miles in all, reports the Guardian.

"Right now we're already in discussions," says an engineer quoted in the original story. "Russia has already been thinking about this for many years." In the context of China's other massive railway projects, it's not unlikely they'd be considering something like this, writes Lily Kuo at Quartz. But it's still "absurd," she adds, estimating the cost of the China-Russia-Canada-America line at more than $200 billion. Beijing would reportedly pay for it all. "China may be one of the best examples of countries that love mega-infrastructure projects, but even this may be too much." (More China stories.)

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