Huge new station for Fengtai

Source:Global Times Published: 2010-4-19 9:34:55

By Li Yang

Fengtai Railway Station will be expanded to among the biggest in Asia, according to the district deputy chief talking to Beijing Public Service Radio Saturday.

If correct, Beijing will retake the title of "biggest railway station in Asia" back from Guangzhou, the capital city of Guangdong Province in South China.

The 380,000-square-meter Guangzhou South Station trumped 310,000-square-meter Beijing South in 2009.

"It's an ambitious plan," Li Changan told the Beijing Times. Li said the expanded station will be three times as big as Beijing South.

No detailed construction plan for the station has come out yet, the Beijing Times reported, but the Ministry of Railways has confirmed Fengtai station will be expanded.

The capital city will have four major and two minor rail stations by 2020, Zhu Huigang, director of the Beijing Railway Bureau told the 11th National People's Congress in Beijing on March 8.

Fengtai Railway Station will be one of the two minor stations designed to offload pressure from Beijing West Railway Station. Fengtai district already includes both Beijing West and Beijing South train stations.

Some Fengtai residents seemed less than thrilled about the plan.

"Why is it always Fengtai?" a resident surnamed Li wrote on online forum "I bet other districts could share the burden of several stations with us."

"We don't need any more big stations because Fengtai district already has many."

The new railway station will import a sizeable migrant and transient pollution and harm Fengtai's development, Li believed.

"There's no doubt that in China the public security situation around stations is always very bad because there are all shades of people and most are transient," he said.

This already-massive traveling population created daily traffic jams in surrounding areas like Liuliqiao and the South Third Ring Road, he said.

Beijing Mayor Guo Jinlong last month suggested the Beijing West Railway Station be relocated out of the downtown area to improve traffic during the National People's Congress.

The new Fengtai Railway Station could improve Fengtai district, according to urban planner Wang Yankai.

"Now the nearby area looks just like a big urban village and a big construction project could change its image a lot."

Founded in 1895, Fengtai Railway Station has two platforms and about 30 passenger trains a day, mostly the slow kind.

In the next five years, railway authorities allegedly plan not only to rebuild Beijing Railway Station and Beijing West Railway Station, but also to build a new Beijing East Railway Station in suburban Tongzhou district.

Posted in: Society, Metro Beijing

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