As the world’s most populated country, China’s gridlocked traffic is legendary, especially in major cities like Beijing and Shanghai.
To help combat the problem of traffic jams and maximise limited road space, the country’s top engineers have unveiled the Transit Elevated Bus (TEB) at the 19th China Beijing International High-Tech Expo on Sunday.
The TEB is an electric-powered elevated bus that runs on rails and operates high above ground so cars can drive underneath it like driving through a tunnel while it transports passengers from station to station, bypassing road traffic. Each bus has a capacity of 1,200 passengers.
In an ideal scenario, the TEB will ease China’s traffic congestion, boost China’s public transport system and reduce pollution.
According to Bai Zhiming, an engineer in charge of the TEB project, this new mode of transportation functions in a similar way to the subway but it’s cheaper to build and construction of the system could be completed in a year.
However, questions still remain as to how safe the TEB will be, considering the scale model at the expo used only cars and not tall and heavy vehicles such as trucks and vans, to demonstrate how it would work.
The demo model also lacked safety barriers that separated the cars from the bus, raising safety concerns on traffic collisions which are already common throughout the country’s roads.
CCTV reported that the TEB will undergo first runs and rigorous testing in the second half of this year. The tests are scheduled to take place in Qinhuangdao City, which is in the northeast of China’s Hebei province.