China wants to build a massive 8000-mile high-speed train line connecting China, Russia, Canada, and the United States via a 125-mile underwater tunnel. The route would begin in the country’s northeast and extend through Siberia and across the Bering Straight into Alaska. The entire trip would take two days, with the train traveling at an average of 220 miles per hour.
According to the state-run China Daily, the tunnel technology is already in place and will be used to build a high-speed railway between the south-east province of Fujian and Taiwan. The project will be funded and constructed by China but the details of this project are yet to be finalized.
A report in the state-run Beijing Times quoted Wang Mengshu, a railway expert at the Chinese Academy of Engineering, as saying, “Right now we’re already in discussions. Russia has already been thinking about this for many years.”
The Beijing Times listed the “China-Russia-Canada-America” line as one of four large-scale international high-speed rail projects the country wants to build.
The first is a line that would run from London via Paris, Berlin, Warsaw, Kiev and Moscow, where it would split into two routes, one of which would run to China through Kazakhstan and the other through eastern Siberia.
The second line would begin in the far-western Chinese city of Urumqi and then run through Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Iran and Turkey to Germany. The third would begin in the south-western city of Kunming and end in Singapore.
(The longest undersea tunnel in the world is the Channel Tunnel, which runs under the English Channel for just under 25 miles. That train, opened in 1994, cost about $7.8 billion ($20.2 billion today). Today, the Bering Strait tunnel would cost approximately $35 billion.)