Construction has begun on a new high-speed railway linking the northern coal-rich Shanxi province to the central province of Henan.
The 358-km-long railway starts in Taiyuan, capital of Shanxi, and ends in Henan's Jiaozuo City. Construction began on a 33-km stretch in Henan on Friday.
The railway has a designed speed of 250 km per hour and has an annual transportation capacity of 40 million passengers.
Construction of the railway will take four and a half years with a total investment of 43 billion yuan (6.36 billion U.S. dollars).
The high-speed railway will extend to Zhengzhou, capital of Henan, as Zhengzhou and Jiaozuo are already connected by high-speed intercity railways.
Upon completion of the new Taiyuan-Jiaozuo railway, travel time of high-speed trains between Zhengzhou and Taiyuan will be cut in half to about two hours.
The Shanxi section of the new railway began construction in June.
Currently, the high-speed trains between the two provincial capitals bypass Shijiazhuang, capital of Hebei province, which neighbors Henan and Shanxi.
The new railway will become an important rail transportation line between north and central China and boost local development.