Qingdao finally has broken ground on its subway, 22 years after it first intended to build one.
The first phase of the Qingdao subway project, which will consist of 22 stations, will start from Qingdao Railway Station and finish at Qingdao Railway North Station, with a length of 24.9 kilometers. With a total investment of about 15.8 billion (is this RMB or dollars?), this phase is scheduled to be put into operation by the end of 2014.
Jiang Daming, governor of Shandong Province, said: "This is the first subway construction project in Shandong province, which will further enhance the comprehensive competitiveness of the city."
"The construction of this project will further optimize the urban spatial structure and distribution of industries," Xia Geng, mayor of Qingdao, said.
Qingdao first intended to build the subway in 1987. But it wasn’t until August 2009 that the Qingdao Fast Track Transit Construction Plan was finally ratified by the country. The ground-breaking ceremony was Nov. 30.
According to the plan, the total length of the subway lines in Qingdao is to be 519.4 kilometers. Eight lines will be for the city center, with a total length of 231.5 km, and four lines will be for outlying areas, with a total length of 287.9 km.
Editor Li Jing
By Dai Yan (China Daily Shandong Bureau)