All large and mid-sized cities have traffic congestion and smog problems. This swift, energy-efficient rail freeway system is needed to cope with these problems. Although China is building bullet train network, it covers large cities, mostly in eastern China. Traveling between smaller cities and cities in western part of China also need this low-cost, high-efficiency rail freeway system.
Bullet train is an American dream. Although a large number of people, including President Obama and his administration, have been pushing to have it, this dream still seems to be far from becoming true. Those who are against the system have concerns of low usage. This further raise the concern of low return of its rocketing high investment. The reasons for low usage include:
- low population densities
- advanced highway system
- advanced air travel system
- the driving habit of people who like to keep their own privacy and freedom
The low-cost, high-efficient, and very convenient rail freeway system should be the best choice for the US. In addition, bullet trains are only useful for long distance travels. Rail freeway system, however, is also useful and highly needed for American cities which have been seriously troubled by heavy traffic jams.
Rail freeway also has its unique advantage for countries like Canada, Australia, and Russia’s Siberia area with vast land and low population. In these places, bullet train may never be profitable, although the voices to build bullet trains in some places are very loud, too. Highly populated countries like India, Japan, Nigeria may also find rail freeway system the best choice for their development.
In 2006, a system for passenger loading/unloading without stopping bullet trains was proposed in China. The system requires adding cabins to the top of bullet trains, which increases the total height and the height of weight center. This would not work because it raises the center of weight. More importantly, the heights of many tunnels along the tracks will not be high enough to allow the new system to pass through.
By jointing an overhead exit ramp and an overhead entrance ramp together, attaching and detaching adjustable-span rail buses behind the main train, we can establish a totally new system for loading and unloading people without stopping the trains.