Transport on right track
The launch of high-speed train services between Beijing and Shanghai last month has also improved transport for Hangzhou, as it is now possible to travel between the city and the Chinese capital in less than six hours.
The Beijing-Shanghai high-speed route runs 90 trains a day, travelling at either 300km/h or 250km/h, taking four hours and 48 minutes, or seven hours and 56 minutes respectively.
Given the fastest train between Hangzhou and Shanghai takes just 45 minutes, it is possible to travel from Beijing to Hangzhou, or vice versa, within six hours, including a transit time of 20 minutes.
Direct high-speed trains between Beijing and Hangzhou are also available.
Among the 90 trains, five travel between Beijing South Station and Hangzhou. In addition, there are two trains between Tianjin West and Hangzhou, and one between Jinan West and Hangzhou.
Hangzhou's high-speed service began last October, with the launch of the Shanghai-Hangzhou intercity service.
The 160km route is served by the CRH380A new generation high-speed trains, with a maximum operating speed of 380km/h, or 350km/h in continuous operation. There are more than 40 trains running between the two cities daily.
Meanwhile, construction of the Hangzhou East Station is under way and expected to begin operations in June next year.
With an investment of 1.9 billion yuan (HK$2.29 billion), the station will have five floors, including three underground, with a construction area of 240,000 square metres. It is being built on the site of the old station which was demolished in January last year.
The 30-track facility is expected to handle 300,000 passengers daily. They will be able to change to various forms of public transport within the complex. A subway station will be in the basement, and a ferry pier will also be built.