Jul. 3rd, 2015

As noted elsewhere, I've just gotten back from a week in Shanghai and a week in Singapore.  Both of these trips were very urban; the Zhujiajiao expedition involved a guide and a driver and two and a half hours (with traffic, both ways) in a car but otherwise we were on our own two feet and the rails.

The Shanghai subway )

The fast train to Suzhou )

I do want to note just how much this intercity train system is kicking the ass of anything in the United States, though.  "One stop per 100 km" roughly matches what long-distance trains like the Lake Shore Limited do; if they run 175 mph between stations instead of 80 mph then that can literally halve the time to Chicago.  Even the "fast" trains like the Acela Express have very short sections of actually being "fast", between Boston and New York the section south of New Haven is also 80 mph with sections like downtown Bridgeport being 25 mph.  I think something like this is the vision of the big California construction project but it takes both money and willpower to do it.  China is willing to do it; here we just can't commit.

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