5 Exciting New Railways for Planet Earth
News that Singapore and Kuala Lumpur are to be connected by a new rail link has ignited interest in a mode of transport that Singaporeans don’t get to use all that often: the high speed train. The current 6 hours is set to be slashed to just 90 minutes – and it’s all due to be complete by 2020. Reports of new railways have been abound lately, so we thought we’d put together a list of the most exciting lines soon to grace planet Earth. It’s time to pack your bag, organise your travel insurance, and…in most cases wait a few years for the line to be built!
Singapore to KL
Two great cities and around 300km of track: we don’t know much about the new Singapore-Kuala Lumpur line, but it is hoped it will further improve links between the two countries, economically and otherwise. We also don’t yet know which companies will be building it, or how much it will cost, but we do know you could be enjoying the skyline of the Malaysian capital in just an hour and half. Only 7 years to go!
HS2 London to Birmingham/Manchester/Leeds, UK
It’s not easy getting big projects built in the UK, usually because someone’s house has to be demolished in the process. This is perhaps one reason why it will take until 2032-3 to complete the high speed link from London to Manchester and Leeds, which will run for 400km along its longest section. Its top speed of around 400kmh will cut journey times a great deal, but at £32bn, some wonder if it’s worth the price.
Harbin-Dalian High-Speed Rail Line, China
This is the first high speed line in northern China, covering a distance of 904km. It’s suffered from a number of setbacks, but finally opened on December the 1st 2012. The engineers eventually decided that the line would operate a summer and a winter mode, with summer trains operating at the top speed of 300kmh, and winter ones at 200kmh (due to the effects of cold weather on the rails). This line takes in some remote and beautiful Chinese countryside, so is definitely worth considering if you love epic train journeys.
Delhi to Mumbai Industrial Corridor Rail Link, India
The name of this line sounds like the Indians mean business – literally. A whole tract of land between the capital Delhi and the commercial hub of Mumbai is set to be developed, and rail will form a major part of this. Rail freight and heavy industry seem to be the main focus here, so if you fancy a train ride between Delhi and Mumbai anytime soon, a 17 hour marathon on the old line is the only way!
Costa Brava High Speed ‘Golf’ Extension, Spain
While getting to a golf course in Singapore is a very straightforward affair, the poor citizens of Paris and Madrid have to try a bit harder to find a decent place to swing. Thankfully, the already splendid Spanish high speed train system (second only to China in terms of size) has been extended to encompass the Costa Brava, where a great many superb golf courses lie waiting to be enjoyed. As good a reason for building a railway as any!