TIANJIN, China — China’s rulers are planning a megacity that would be home to 130 million people and cover an area the size of New England.
Sitting on the northeast coast of China, Jing-Jin-Ji — which stands for “Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei” — is a central plank of the country’s economic development plan over the next century.
The sheer numbers are startling. In November, the government approved $36 billion to build 700 miles of rail within three years.
Residents of bedroom communities just outside Beijing’s city limits, who now spend five to six hours a day on their commutes, are expected to be the main beneficiaries of a new transportation system serving the megalopolis.
In the longer term, 24 intercity railways are planned for completion by 2050 — eight alone by 2020. The goal is a “one-hour commuting circle” across the area, according to the government.
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