Beijing’s oldest railroad station reopened on Monday, June 20th. Fengtai Railway Station had been closed for four years due to renovation work. After its reopening, it has become the largest railway passenger station in Asia. According to CNN, one of the unique features is a photovoltaic power station on the roof, which generates power for the building.
It has 32 platforms and can handle 14,000 passengers per hour. In the central province of Henan, two new high-speed trains have come into operation. One connects the provincial capital, Zhengzhou, with the city of Puyang via 195 kilometers of track. The other connects Zhengzhou with the municipality of Chongqing, cutting travel time in half to four hours.
“The design of the double-layer yards－with bullet trains running atop and regular-speed trains running on the ground－saves a lot of space,” Ma Hui, chief engineer of the construction project, told state-run newspaper China Daily.
The unique design has changed the layout of the traditional railway station. It is an innovative way to arrange the functions of a railway station.Ma Hui, chief engineer of the construction project
The station will serve as a terminus for multiple trunk railroads in the country, such as the Beijing-Guangzhou High-Speed Railway and the Beijing-Kowloon Railway, the State Railway Group of China said. The company said it is putting 120 trains into service in the preliminary stage of operation of the new facilities.
The station was built in 1895 in the Fengtai district in southern Beijing. It offered passenger and freight services until its closure in 2010, followed by the start of a reconstruction in September 2018.
The reconstructed station has a gross floor area of nearly 400,000 square meters, as well as 32 rail tracks and 32 platforms. It will have a maximum service capacity of 14,000 passengers per hour.
It is the country’s first railway station with a two-level structure, allowing it to offer services for both ordinary and high-speed trains. High-speed trains between Beijing and Wuhan have increased their speed to 350 kilometers per hour, cutting travel time between the two cities to three and a half hours.
Though most international tourists may not yet travel to China, Fengtai is already serving train routes from the capital to Shanghai, Guangzhou and other hubs, CNN reports. A train service from Fengtai to Hong Kong’s Kowloon station is being planned for when the city reopens its border with the mainland.