Chongqing - A recent trend on social media has focused on the land surrounding the outer reaches of Chongqing Rail Transit (CRT) lines, many of which currently extend into the unoccupied countryside with little to no development. The point of interest is that in the space of just a few years, similar transit stations, for example, Caojiawan Station, that once stood amidst vast open expanses are now in the middle of bustling urban centers.
Towards the end of April 2023, the northern extension of CRT Line 5 opened for passenger traffic, with seven new stations that pushed the total length of the network in Chongqing beyond the 500km mark and brought added convenience through a connection with Line 10 at Central Park West.
While the land outside the final stop Yuegang North Road has basic road infrastructure in place, and preparations are going on for mass development, the surroundings are completely devoid of residents, and huge empty plots with bare soil reach far into the distance. However, this is all expected to change in the coming years, and this Vlog with iChongqing reporter James aims to capture this sight with future comparison in mind.
Likewise, the last station on the Expo Line, named Shaheba, stops abruptly in the middle of a picturesque country scene. Here, wide boulevards stretch in opposite directions, with attractive pavements and well-tended flowerbeds and trees lining the flanks and central reservation. There are lush expanses of rolling countryside on either side, with small trails connecting with sporadic farmhouses nestled amid the lush vegetation and mountain ridges providing an idyllic backdrop.
Despite the fact this area is mostly uninhabited, and the occasional vehicle passes through to break the tranquility of bird chatter, ambitious plans exist to ultimately incorporate Shaheba into the Liangjiang Shuitu New City, where hi-tech enterprises will cluster amid the fine natural environment, yet enjoy convenient access to modern transport infrastructure such as highways, and Jiangbei International Airport only ten kilometers away.
In this unique vlog post, come with James for an afternoon trip to the end of line stations Yuegang North Road and Shaheba that are currently "lines to nowhere", with a mind to retake the same journey a few years later to see how ambitious development plans have come to fruition!
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