There’s an interesting report today in the Wall Street Journal that talks about a new proposed train from Tokyo to Osaka that could cut the time of the trip down to just an hour!
The report says that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is proposing a plan that would cost about $90 billion (USD) that would build a new bullet train that would make the trip between the two cities in just an hour (currently just above 2 hours on the Shinkansen). The new proposed train would levitate (using magnetics and things that are beyond my brain level) to move the train at speeds approaching 300 MPH (current Shinkansen is about 150 MPH).
The plan is two-fold for Abe and Japan. One, it will produce a new way of transportation, a faster upgrade that could boost the stagnant economy that Japan has had for years. The other side of it is to create a boost of innovation and development for the Japanese people. Countries like China and others have undergone great development and economic booms while Japan hasn’t done lately. Abe is hoping this new proposed train will spark the Japanese economy and show the rest of the region that Japan is still one of the powerhouses.
I think this is a very interesting idea and a train of that power is awesome and also a little scary! I don’t think a lot of the Japanese people are completely stoked about the idea, especially with the price tag attached. The Japanese aren’t really high on Abe at this point either, over 50% of the people are not in favor of the military policy change, so he might have a hard time rallying support for this new train. We will have to wait and see what happens.