Shanghai seeks more views on maglev

By Wang Zhenghua (China Daily)
Updated: 2008-01-21 07:49

SHANGHAI - Municipal authorities will conduct more research and invite more public opinion before deciding how the city's maglev railway should be extended.

Some residents, especially those living along the proposed route, are against the project because they say noise pollution and electromagnetic radiation could create serious health problems.

Though the first round of public discussion on the revised extension plan ended on Friday, residents have been asked to keep submitting their views and suggestions through emails, phone calls and post.

A statement posted on Shanghai urban planning administration bureau's website on Friday said more residents' feedbacks would be studied and further public opinion sought.

Many residents have spoken out against the costly proposed project, which would link Shanghai's two airports.

People are not convinced by experts' assurances that the radiation and noise pollution caused by the railway would not pose a health hazard and would not bring down property prices along the route.

"The extended line may not harm our health, but we still fear it could cause our residential units' prices to drop," said a resident living near the proposed route.

Shanghai has the only commercial maglev railway in the world.

The government is trying to minimize the impact of the project on people's lives by avoiding crowded neighborhoods on the route. As a result, the revised plan could cost twice as much as the original one.

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