Shanghai lines up new tram system

Shanghai lines up new tram system

Proposal for six routes in Songjiang district part of 2020 goal for 800-km rail network

Shanghai is gauging public feedback on a proposed tram system.

City authorities have proposed building six lines - 90 kilometers of track - in southwestern Songjiang district. Powered by electricity, trams are rail vehicles that run on tracks along public streets.

The move is part of a wider goal to have 800 km of tram lines in operation by 2020 to supplement the public transportation network.

Transport experts have welcomed the move, while the initial response among commuters has also been positive.

"I drive to work every day and I hope the new system will help me get out of the car and onto the tram," college lecturer Zheng Weiyong said.

He lives in Songjiang New City, a major new-town development that will have an estimated 1.1 million residents by 2020 and the focal point in the proposed tram system. Five of the six lines will travel through Songjiang New City.

Zheng said he spends about 1,000 yuan (S$205) a month on fuel and he complained that parking in the district can also be a headache.

Two of the tram lines will pass his home, "making life much more convenient", he said.

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