Work begins on Beijing-Xiongan rail link

Updated 2018-03-01 01:09:08 Xinhua

Construction of a rail link between Beijing and Xiongan New Area began Wednesday, according to the Xiongan New Area management committee.

The 33.5 billion yuan (about 5.3 billion U.S. dollars) line stretches 92.4 kilometers via Daxing District of Beijing and Bazhou City in Hebei Province and has five stops.

Travel time between Beijing and Xiongan will be 30 minutes.

The section from downtown Beijing to the new airport has a designed speed of 250 km per hour and will go into use together with the airport in September 2019. The section from the airport to Xiongan has a designed speed of 350 km per hour, and will be operational by the end of 2020.

"The rail link is a major infrastructure project for the new area. It is of great significance," said Wan Shujun, Party chief with Xiongxian County.

Xiongan New Area covers Hebei Province's Xiongxian, Rongcheng and Anxin counties.

According to the committee, the link will help transfer non-capital functions out of Beijing and advance coordinated development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region.

Remarkable progress has been made in various fields such as infrastructure and the environment since the coordinated development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region was put forward in 2014.

China announced plans in April 2017 to establish Xiongan New Area, an economic zone about 100 km southwest of Beijing, as another key project to push regional integrated development. It is also the third new area of national significance after the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone and the Shanghai Pudong New Area.

Chinese Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli on Sunday called for more efforts to build Xiongan New Area into a model for promoting high-quality development across the country. Zhang made the remarks at a meeting in Beijing on advancing the coordinated development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region.

On Feb. 22, senior leaders of the Communist Party of China agreed that building the new area was a "historic project" after hearing a report on the progress of developing a general plan for Xiongan.

National innovation platforms and an efficient transportation network are being created in the area, as China aims to make the area low-carbon, intelligent, livable and influential globally.

A number of companies have set up branches in Xiongan New Area. In November last year, e-commerce giant Alibaba announced the registration in Xiongan of three subsidiaries to provide technological, financial and logistics services, respectively.

Also last year, internet giant Tencent set up a "financial technology lab" and a branch in Xiongan.

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