China issues the Multi-level Rail Transit Plan in the Yangtze River Delta to expand rail network to meet mobility demand (Part 2/3)

2021-08-25 | UPSC & National Development and Reform Commission

Workers are busy constructing a tunnel for the Hangzhou-Wenzhou High-speed Railway in Taizhou, Zhejiang province. Construction on the railway line, a crucial part of the intercity rail traffic network in the Yangtze River Delta region, is expected to be completed next year. [China Daily/Wang Huabin]

3. Build a Multi-level rail network layout

To adapt the multi-level transport needs, coordinate the planning layout and integration of trunk railways, intercity railways, urban and suburban railways and urban rail transit, build a fully covered and internal and external smoothly connected rail transit network of “four levels” railways integration. Among them, the trunk railway network relies on the national railways, mainly serving medium and long-distance passenger and cargo transportation, including intercity transport function; the intercity railway network mainly serves the intercity passengers between regional nodes and neighboring cities; the urban and suburban railway networks mainly focus on the commuters travel between central area and surrounding towns; the urban transit network provides commuting services within the city center.

(1) Trunk Railways Network

To focus on strengthening strategic support, give equal emphasis to high-speed and general-speed railways, synchronize new construction and renovation, accelerate connection of major railways, continuously optimize the basic network, build a regional trunk railway network with “three-vertical and three horizontal” and multiple radial nodes, strengthen the railway network connecting of the Yangtze River Delta with the whole nation, further enhance the ability of radial, driving and leading within the Yangtze River Delta. 

To build a multi-direction connected high-speed railway network. According to the measures of national railway plan, the Yangtze River Delta rail transit network will be constructed to north, west and southwest with the layouts of “three vertical” and “three horizontal” rail lines. The “three vertical” are the rail lines of coastal, Beijing-Shanghai and Beijing-Hongkong (Taiwan); and the “three horizontal” are the rail lines of Lianyungang-Urumqi, riverside and Shanghai-Kunming. The network should be dense in the areas with large amount of passengers and construction funding where urge to develop. The trunk railways with large traffic volume need to be strengthened to connect the important metropolitan circles and node cities within the region, and also connect the important city clusters and provincial capitals for the outside. 

The northward railway network will be constructed mainly based on the high-speed rail lines of costal, Beijing-Shanghai and Beijing-Hongkong (Taiwan). To speed up the construction of Taicang-Situan section of Shanghai-Nantong Railway, plan and construct the railways including Nantong-Suzhou-Jiaxing-Ningbo and Nanjing-Chuzhou-Bengbu-Xinyi-Huai’an, build a multiple travel network connecting Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region and Shandong Peninsula with the Yangtze River Delta.

The westward railway network will be built on the basis of the high-speed rail lines of riverside and Lianyungang-Urumqi. To push forward the railways from Shanghai to Huzhou via Suzhou, plan and construct the riverside high-speed railways including the section of Shanghai-Nanjing-Hefei-Wuhan and Shanghai-Zhapu-Hangzhou, etc. To pursue the westward connecting the Central Plains, Guanzhong, Middle Reaches of Yangtze River, and Chengdu-Chongqing regions with the Yangtze River Delta.

The southwestward railway network will mainly rely on the high-speed rail lines of Shanghai-Kunming, the costal and Beijing-Hongkong (Taiwan). To accelerate the construction of railways such as Nanchang-Jingdezhen-Huangshan, Anqing-Jiujiang, Hangzhou-Shaoxing-Taizhou, and Hangzhou-Wenzhou, plan and construct the costal high-speed railways including Ningbo-Wenzhou-Fuzhou section, etc. The railways connecting Quzhou with Huangshan, Jinhua with Taizhou are planned as the long-term projects. The rapid connection with southwest regions such as the Guangdong-Hongkong-Macau, Fujian, Beibu Bay, Central Yunnan need to be strengthened.

To comprehensively extend and upgrade the general-speed railway network. To improve the facility layout of general-speed railway, accelerate to fill the gaps of railway network, promote the extension reformation of bottleneck section, encourage to upgrade the existing general-speed electric multiple-unit trains, work to build transport network of container and heavy-duty, construct the last kilometer to connect the multiple modes of combined transportation mainly based on railways, enhance the facility ability of general-speed and promote the coverage of basic service. To speed up the construction of Quzhou-Ningde and Ningbo-Jinhua railways, plan and construct the passenger railway from Sanmenxia to Bozhou and Suzhou, Hangzhou Bay freight railway and other projects. Considering the transport need and current carrying ability, research to implement the railway extension of Xinyi-Changxing, Nanjing-Wuhu, etc. To promote the railway construction of special line, introduce project connecting Yangtze River trunk railway with coastal port, and fully deliver efficient connection of trunk railway with key port, large industrial and mining enterprises and logistic parks. To launch the riverside rail freight transport, explore the possibility of major transport lines to implement the construction of passenger and cargo separation lines, and the double-deck container channels.

(2) Intercity Railways Network

To focus on promoting interconnection and accessibility, optimize the planning layout of intercity railways, fully explore the intercity transport function of existing trunk railways, speed up the construction of intercity railways of Shanghai-Nanjing-Hefei, Shanghai-Hangzhou, Nanjing-Hangzhou and Hefei-Hangzhou-Ningbo as well as the regional connections, build a intercity railway network with accessible axes and radial nodes, strengthen the efficient connection between key node cities such as Shanghai, Nanjing, Hangzhou, Hefei and Ningbo, as well as with surrounding cities.

Axes accessibility. To construct large capability intercity railway channel which connecting key node cities and towns along the rail lines relying on the vertical and horizontal railway axes. Shanghai-Nanjing Axis is based on the existing railways including Beijing-Shanghai High-speed Railway, Beijing-Shanghai Railway, Hefei-Nanjing Railway, Nanjing-Qidong Railway, Shanghai-Nanjing Intercity Railway, Riverside Intercity Railway of Southern Jiangsu under construction, and Riverside High-speed Railway, Zhenjiang-Ma’anshan Railway in planning, plans to construct intercity railways from Suzhou to Wuxi and Changzhou and Yangzhou t0 Zhenjiang in the future. Shanghai-Hangzhou Axis, relying on Shanghai-Kunming Railway, Shanghai-Hangzhou High-speed Railway and Shanghai-Suzhou-Huzhou Railway under construction, Shanghai-Zhapu-Hangzhou Railway in planning, will plan and construct the intercity railway from Shanghai to Hangzhou in recent years, and will finish the intercity railway construction from Suzhou to Hangzhou hereafter. Nanjing-Hangzhou Axis, based on Nanjing-Hangzhou High-speed Railways, the Second High-speed Railway from Nanjing to Hangzhou and Yancheng-Taizhou-Wuxi-Changzhou-Yixing-Huzhou Railway, will include Zhenjiang-Hangzhou Intercity Railway in the long-term. Hefei-Hangzhou-Ningbo Axis is relied on Shangqiu-Hefei-Hangzhou Railway, Hangzhou-Ningbo Railway, Hangzhou-Ningbo High-speed Railway and Hangzhou-Lin’an-Jixi Railway in planning, accelerate the construction of Huzhou-Hangzhou West Railway and the liaison line of Hangzhou-Huangshan High-speed Railway

Node radial influence. Taking Shanghai, Nanjing, Hangzhou, Hefei, Ningbo as the centers, the construction of intercity railways of city clusters and metropolitan circles are gradually promoted. To strengthen the close connection of central cities, create a 1-1.5 hour intercity travel circle. To plan and construct the intercity railways from Suzhou via Dianshan Lake to Shanghai, Hefei to Chizhou, Rudong via Nantong, Suzhou to Huzhou, etc., actively support the construction of intercity railways between neighboring large cities with high demand in passenger transportation and economic vitality, connect with trunk railway, extend the coverage of railway network while improve the service quality. 

(3) Urban and Suburban Railways Network

To focus on optimizing the supply of commuting service, highlight the support and lead functions of urban and suburban railways to the development priority zone of metropolitan circle, connect city and town clusters with a population of more than 50,000 people with important industrial park and tourism attractions, form a 0.5-1 hour commuting traffic network with central urban area and surrounding city and town clusters, lead Shanghai Metropolitan Circle and Nanjing, Hangzhou, Suzhou-Wuxi-Changzhou, Ningbo Metropolitan Circles for integrated development, encourage large, medium-sized, small cities and towns to optimize their layouts

To prioritize the usage of existing resources. To completely transform the project implementation conditions of existing urban and suburban railways, promote the urban and suburban railway demonstration experience of Shanghai Jinshan, Ningbo-Yuyao, Zhuji-Hangzhou, etc., encourage to optimize the transport organization, strengthen the existing railways, transform and extend part of the railways, transform stations and platforms, construct double-track lines, branch lines, liaison lines and stations, etc. To fully explore existing transportation capacity, adopt urban and suburban railways as public transportation, provide convenient transportation service for the people.

To promote the construction of new railways. To support the planning and construction of urban and suburban railways of key metropolitan circles, encourage passengers to transfer between urban and suburban railways with trunk railway, intercity railway and urban railway transit, promote, promote to transfer directly at different rail levels. Urban and suburban railways could appropriately expand to the adjacent cities (towns) where have the needs of integration and commuting. Projects such as Jiading-Minhang line (including northern extension section), Nanhui branch line and Nanfeng line in Shanghai, from Jinshan to Pinghu, subway line 18 in Nanjing, from Nanjing to Ma’anshan, railway from Gourong to Maoshan, Hangzhou to Deqing, Hangzhou Xiasha to Chang’an, Ningbo to Xiangshan, Phase I of S3 line in Wenzhou, relocation of S2 line in Taizhou, S1 line to Hefei Xinqiao Airport, Phase I of tourism line T1 in Huangshan will be planned and constructed. Hangzhou-Haining railway will extend to Wenzheng Street Station. In the long-term, railways including Shanghai-Chongming-Qidong, Phase II of from Nanjing to He County, from Nanjing to Chuzhou via Wuyi, from Yangzhou to Taizhou via Yangtai Airport, from Xuzhou to Xiao County, Xuzhou to Jiawang, Hangzhou to Zhuji, Shaoxing to Shengzhou and Xinchang, Jinhua to Wuyi, Yongkang and Dongyang, S3 line in Taizhou, from Huzhou to Anji, Hefei to Chaohu, Hefei to Lujiang, Phase I of tourism line T2 in Huangshan, and from Ma’anshan to Zhengpu Port, etc. will be planned. 

(4) Urban Rail Transit Network

To strengthen the foundation, improve quality and enhance efficiency, coordinate financial support and development need, and gradually promote the construction of projects according to the city’s development strategy. To focus on serving the central urban area, leverage the advantage of green and safe, convenient and efficient, large capacity of transportation in urban rail transit, enhance the service quality and sustainability of transportation. To improve and optimize the rail transit network of super and super-large cities such as Shanghai, Nanjing, Hangzhou, etc., promote the operation of rail transit network of Hefei, Ningbo and Suzhou, progressively carry out the construction of rail transit in the qualified cities such as Wuxi, Changzhou and Xuzhou, strengthen the efficiency in rail transit connection with urban main traffic hubs, highlight the backbone role of urban rail transit in public transportation of modern large cities.

4. Build a better transport hub system

To strengthen the coordination between transport hubs and urban functional layouts, improve the hub functions and planning layouts which connect different levels of rail transit systems, promote the coordination of planning, construction and operation service between rail transport hubs and other transport hubs such as airports and coach stations, form an 0.5 hour travel radius of important hubs, build the rail transport hub systems with clear levels and efficiency connections, achieve the goal of function synergy, facility connection, service integration and deep interchange of  different rail transit systems. 

I-type hubs. Based on main and large-scale railway stations and airports where serves as a junction for passengers inside and outside the city, to promote the efficiency and convenience of at least “three levels” of trunk railways, intercity railways, urban and suburban railways and urban rail transit, as well as multiple major rail traffic lines, and encourage the longest waking time for transfer less than 5 minutes in the I-type hubs of any transport mode. According to the experience of Shanghai Hongqiao traffic hub, to build new hubs including Shanghai South Railway Station, Nanjing South Railway Station, Hangzhou East Railway Station, and Hefei South Railway Station, etc. To promote the planning layout, coordinated construction, synchronized operation and integrated service of various rail transit in the newly-built hub. If the hub does not have the possibility of simultaneous implementation in the near future, planning or project reserving should be made. 

II-type hubs. Based on main railway stations and intercity railway stations, to closely connect with “three levels” of trunk railways, intercity railways, urban and suburban railways and urban rail transit, and the multiple major rail traffic lines, encourage the longest walking time for transfer within 3 minutes in the II-type hubs. To speed up the hub construction of Shanghai East Railway Station, Nanjing North Railway Station, Hangzhou West Railway Station, Newly-built Hefei West Railway Station, Suzhou North Railway Station, and Jiaxing South Railway Station, etc., and reserve further development. To optimize the internal functional layout and transport trajectory, promote the channel transfer into three-dimensional transfer gradually, and passengers can be conveyed from the same platform between different rail transport.

III-type hubs. Based on the railway stations of prefectural level cities and main bus stations of central cities, to efficient connect “two levels” of trunk railways, intercity railways, urban and suburban railways and urban rail transit, encourage the waking time for transfer less than 2 minutes between the two levels of transport. To promote the hub construction of Nantong Railway Station, Wenzhou South Railway Station, Lu’an North Railway Station, etc., explore to promote the direct operation passenger service of different rail transit modes with major proportion of transfer, and support the multi-connection and transfer of different rail transit at different levels. To strengthen the connection between the hubs and public transportation, slow-traffic and parking systems, enhance the transport distribution ability and level of passenger transfer hubs. 

Source: UPSC & National Development and Reform Commission  

Edited and translated by GUO Xinxin