China already has one of the world’s largest and most remarkable high-speed rail networks, and it shows no signs of slowing down. They are, on the contrary, planning railroad lines that will link entire continents.
Imagine a high-speed train that travels from mainland China to Siberia in Eastern Russia, via the Bering Strait into Alaska, across the mountainous peaks of Canada’s Yukon and British Columbia, and eventually into the United States. That is a concept that China is seriously considering.
The 13,000-kilometer (8,078-mile) international bullet railway line might be extended to every corner of the United States once completed. Okay, but at what cost? A staggering $200 billion – a sum that even Elon Musk could not afford.
The ideas first surfaced in 2014, when various news agencies reported on an article by the Beijing Times about the 8,000-mile super railway. The line would be known as the “China-Russia-Canada-America” line (quite creative, right?) and would run across all four countries, connecting them for trade, tourism, and, eventually, economic growth. For the crossing via the Bering Strait, it would require an undersea tunnel four times longer than the Channel Tunnel, and significantly more high-tech to boot, IFLScience says.
When the plans first emerged, Chinese engineers claimed to be already in talks with Russia about constructing the line. They were very confident that the plan was feasible using current technology. And they were probably right, too.
Chinese engineers claimed to be in contact with Russia about building the line when the plans initially surfaced. They were highly certain that the proposal was achievable utilizing existing technology. They were probably correct as well.
China approved the world’s first underwater bullet train in 2018. It would run the length of mainland China, from Ningbo, a port city near Shanghai, to Zhoushan, a group of islands off the country’s coast. The railway line would use Maglev trains, which levitate above a magnetic track while being driven along at high speeds, and work on the enormous project is already started. A 16.2-kilometer underwater section will be included in the redesigned course.
Apparently, the US might be a little more behind when it comes to huge railway projects like this one. In 2020, the US Government approved a large 2,570-kilometer (1,597-mile) railway line that connects the US and Canada, from Alaska to Alberta, costing $22 billion. Even those modest figures represented a significant improvement for the US railway network, which had been lagging behind other countries.
Will the world’s most expensive megaproject be completed soon? Well, the project looks to have been placed on hold for now, as now flying and cargo ships remain a cheaper choice for trade. But since technology is evolving at an unprecented pace, who knows what the future will bring?
China Plans to Build An Underwater Train Line To The USA|Earthly Mission