China’s most expensive railway in terms of cost per kilometer opened on Thursday, carrying 900 passengers from Yichang city in central Hubei province to Chongqing in Wanzhou district on its maiden run.
The US$3.41 billion Yichang-Wanzhou railway was built in seven years, at a per-kilometer cost of about US$9 million against US$4.35 million for each kilometer of the Qinghai-Tibet railway.
Around 50,000 workers drilled 159 tunnels and built 253 bridges through a stretch of mountains on the eastern edge of the Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau to complete the 377-kilometer route.
The new railway will cut the travel time between Chongqing and Wuhan, capital of Hubei, from 22 hours to five.
The Times of India reports that travel time from other cities in central or east China to the southwest part of the country will also be significantly shorter.