High Speed Rail in China, What Kenya Can Expect With The Recenetly Signed KSh 327b Standard Gauge Railway Construction Project.

The high speed railway newtork is divided into various sections depending on the speed of the trains. Since high-speed rail service in China was introduced on April 18, 2007, passenger numbers have grown from 237,000 in 2007 to 1.33 million in 2012.

Kenya recently signed a financial deal with the Government of China, through China Exim Bank, that would see the construction of a double standard railway line from the capital Nairobi to Mombasa. The contract will also include skills transfer as well as job creation. The first phase which will run from Mombasa to Nairobi will be funded 90% by the Chinese government while Kenya settles the 10%.

An RVR Coach in a train station. The governement plans to improve the passenger and freight trains to speeds of 120 and 80km/h respectively

An RVR Coach in a train station. The governement plans to improve the passenger and freight trains to speeds of 120 and 80km/h respectively

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Train speeds are tagged at 120km/h for passenger coaches and 80% for the freight ones. Travel time from the capital to the coastal city of Mombasa is expected to be 30 minutes once the line is completed. This Ksh. 300 Billion phase will see positive economic changes across the East African market which heavily rely on the Mombasa Port. Since Kenya's railway line has never been extended since its construction, the country has alot to learn once the line is in operational.

View of high speed trains at a Railway Station. The CRH Engines will connect major cities.

View of high speed trains at a Railway Station. The CRH Engines will connect major cities.

China on the other hand boasts of a very intricate railway network with both high speed trains and relatively slow engines. The fast trains which connect major cities can reach speeds of 305km/h. Slower trains will operate at 200km/h and the tickets are relatively cheaper. Because China is avast country, night trains are common. The slower engines are used to connect remote parts of China.

The massive train network of China cuts through mountains and valleys in a bid to maintain a straight line of travel where possible.

The massive train network of China cuts through mountains and valleys in a bid to maintain a straight line of travel where possible.

Ballastless track is very expensive in first cost, and in the case of existing railroads requires closure of the route for a long period.

Ballastless track is very expensive in first cost, and in the case of existing railroads requires closure of the route for a long period.

View of a high speed train ready to depart. The network of electricity lines in the distance is what powers most of China's trains.

View of a high speed train ready to depart. The network of electricity lines in the distance is what powers most of China's trains.