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Futian aiming for high-speed rail hub in ’14

SEHNZHEN residents likely will be able to access high-speed trains to Guangzhou in downtown Futian District by the end of 2014, after the city opens a massive underground station that will serve five Metro lines and the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong High-Speed Railway, Shenzhen Special Zone Daily reported yesterday.

Construction of 37 kilometers of the railway’s 48-kilometer Shenzhen section has been completed, rail authorities said, and construction of the section between Shenzhen and West Kowloon in Hong Kong is expected to be completed by the end of 2015.

The comprehensive transportation hub located under Yitian Road in the Futian CBD has a planned construction area equivalent to 192 soccer fields and could be the biggest of its kind in Asia when completed. It will have three underground stories, with the first story a transfer hall, the second for Metro operation and the third for the high-speed rail line.

Shenzhen currently has 178 kilometers of rail transportation in operation, ranking fourth among Chinese cities.

The city’s rail transportation network has seen an increase in passengers this year with a daily average of about 2.5 million, a boost of 17 percent from 2012’s average. Metro users are accounting for a larger portion of the city’s total public transportation passengers, rising from 13 percent in 2012 to 25 percent in 2013.

The third phase of the city’s multi-year Metro development plan includes six lines, three of which — lines 7, 9 and 11 — are expected to open in 2016. The other three — lines 6, 8 and 16 — are still in construction preparation stages due to delays resulting from land acquisition disagreements or other construction-related disputes.

When completed and combined with the five current Metro lines, the third phase of development will give the city 350 kilometers of rail. (Anna Zhao)

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