Beijing's urban planning authorities have approved planning permission for six new subway lines on which work is scheduled to begin by the end of the year.
The six new lines - the No. 6, 8 and 9 lines, the second phase of the No. 10 line, and the Yizhuang and Daxing lines, have a total length of 152 kilometers, according to the Beijing Municipal Commission of Urban Planning. They will be completed in 2012.
Beijing currently has five subway lines in operation, with a total length of 142 kilometers.
"The city aims to raise the proportion of citizens choosing public transport from the current 30 percent to 45 percent by 2015,and the subway passenger volume will increase to eight million a day from the current 2.2 million," said the commission's Zhou Nansen.
8 million a day is huge. New York City gets about 6.2 million a day. But what is interesting is that they set a goal to reach in terms of percentage of total and figure out what they need to do to reach it. It certainly would be exciting if a major city in the United States was building 6 new lines and LA comes to mind as a city that might want to do that.