a silver bullet train pulling into a train station

Article Link: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0290840

NowComment Link: https://nowcomment.com/documents/368463

This article tries to convince governments to “focus on the differences in the economic foundation and development characteristics of various regions, steadily push forward the construction and operation of the [High Speed Rail], and speed up the renovation of existing lines to help the green development of cities” (Wei and Zhao). The high speed rail gives a time-compression effect as a “fast, safe, convenient, and environmentally friendly passenger transportation tool” (Wei and Zhao). An interesting point this article talks about is how “HSR stations are newly built and mostly located in the suburbs.” This somewhat syncs up to the second source I covered, which proposed the solution that suburbs must be thickened and enhanced so that both the benefits of the city and suburbs can shine the brightest. However, the source follows up by stating “Many literatures have confirmed that China’s HSR construction leads to urban land expansion.” Cities expand, which is what the first source I covered, as well as the second source explains is the problem that fuels the continuous creation of suburbs. However, the economic growth that the increase of intra-country globalization can solve the problem that cities are so badly maintained as cities can be greatly supported to become a safe and secure place. Not only do the high-speed rail systems improve the efficiency of the intercity transportation system, but they also have a “profound impact on economic growth and industrial development.” This is an incentive for businesses to support these railway systems, as they will “reduce the waste of resources caused by the mismatch between supply and demand.” Adopting high-speed rails will give the benefits due to accessible regional heterogeneity. It will greatly impact the economy from the increased globalization within a county as large as China with diverse economies. This article also goes over the “diffusion effect,” whose drawbacks have been covered by the previous two sources, but a great benefit is that development spreads to less developed places like villages and rural areas, expanding the economy into untapped areas. This may be morally controversial, like how division of labor and taking advantage of cheap labor by offsetting lower development jobs to places with developmental disadvantages can occur, but the government must streamline and direct the process, as source 2 stressed. Cities like Shenzhen and Xiamen have experienced significant economic growth due to high speed rails being a major factor.

In conclusion, this source shows how how public transportation must be regarded: as something of high importance. This shows how it’s okay if suburbs are super far away from city centers, but these trains do better in terms of economy, environment, and traffic congestion. This is certainly a much faster, healthier, safer, and thus more favorable alternative to using the freeway and common roads to get to your destination. Because the benefit to economy has been shown in Chinese cities like Shenzhen and Xiamen, it is worth for public investment to go to high-speed railway systems (even though it is reasonably expensive), as it will naturally be paid off due to the economic upturn it will give, reducing the waste of resources caused by the mismatch between supply and demand through very accessible regional heterogeneity.

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