Intercity railway cuts travel time between Beijing, Xiong’an

Photo taken on Dec. 27 shows the Xiong’an Railway Station in Xiong’an New Area, north China’s Hebei province. (Photo by Weng Qiyu/People’s Daily Online)

The 91-km intercity railway connecting Beijing and Xiong’an New Area in north China’s Hebei province opened to traffic on Dec. 27 after almost three years of construction.


At 10:18 a.m. on that day, the C2702 Fuxing bullet train left the newly-built Xiong’an Railway Station for the Beijing West Railway Station.


With a designed top speed of 350 km per hour, the railway has cut the travel time between the two railway stations to about 50 minutes. It also allows travelers to get to Xiong’an New Area from the Beijing Daxing International Airport in about 19 minutes.


“I’m so lucky that I bought a ticket for the train shortly after its booking service opened on Dec. 26,” said a music teacher surnamed Xia. The man who lives in Beijing and often gives lessons in Hebei’s Gu’an county was very excited about the railway’s operation.


“After the railway opened to traffic, I could now take a train to Gu’an, which costs less than one hour,” he pointed out, adding that he used to spend two or three hours or even half a day by subway and bus.


The rail line signifies the speed of China as well as the wisdom of the Chinese people. As another intelligent high-speed railway in China, the line adopted many key technologies, achieving over 70 innovative results and setting several new records.


The railway has employed building information modeling (BIM) technology, the first-ever application of the technology in the railway industry, and realized 3D and intelligent management throughout the full life cycle concerning design, construction and operation, said Liu Weiqun, chairman of the China Railway Design Corporation.


Based on the BIM technology, the railway has made a series of achievements such as smart beam fabrication yards, automatic rebar processing and intelligent compaction of the roadbed, Liu added.


“In the past, we usually couldn’t determine the number of rebar and the size of templates to use until we were in the construction site, which could easily lead to problems like the lack of precision, waste of raw materials, and delays in construction schedules,” Wu Tan, deputy general manager of Xiong’an high-speed railway corporation, told People’s Daily.


By adopting the BIM technology, the company could build an automated computer numerical control rebar production line after virtual construction in a 3D environment, improving the work efficiency by 25 percent, according to Wu.


Besides, each section of the rebar is equipped with a QR code, which enables the tracking of related information, including the construction time and construction workers, thus ensuring the project quality.


While improving the construction efficiency and quality with digital designs, the railway and the Xiong’an Railway Station also pursue environmentally-friendly, green and energy-efficient construction.


The intercity railway completed the design and construction of a fully-prefabricated structure concerning the foundation, piers, bridges, and the bridge floor system in the field of railway construction for the first time. It also formed a complete set of design technology and construction quality acceptance standards.


“Promoting efficient modular production and prefabricated buildings can reduce the dust and ensure zero discharge of construction waste and sewage,” Wu said.


The Xiong’an Railway Station’s oval roof is a photovoltaic power generation system, which can save 30 percent of electric energy.


The station has also set up 15-meter-wide “sunlight belts” that help improve the daylight in the waiting hall and save electricity for lighting in the station.


Meanwhile, a completely enclosed noise barrier that stretches for nearly 850 meters, the first of its kind on a railway with a top designed speed of 350 km per hour in the world, was established on the section around Beiluodian village, Bazhou, Hebei. The sound barrier can reduce the noise of the trains to below 20 decibels.


It is reported that the station will become a hub connecting the Beijing-Hong Kong-Taiwan high-speed railway, Beijing-Xiong’an intercity railway, Tianjin-Xiong’an intercity line, and Xiong’an-Xinzhou high-speed railway.


“The full operation of the Beijing-Xiong’an intercity railway and the Xiong’an Railway Station will significantly facilitate the traveling of people in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, better meet the travel needs of residents in Xiong’an New Area and its surrounding areas, and help enhance the attractiveness of Xiong’an and steadily speed up the new area’s development,” said Ding Jinjun, deputy director of the reform and development bureau of Xiong’an New Area.

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