On 24-25 November, UITP and the China Association of Metros (CAMET) held a joint workshop on fully automated metros in Beijing, with the aim of sharing knowledge and information on this topic.
Growth of metro networks in China this decade has been exponential. According to data provided by Prof. Tang Tao of Beijing Jiaotong University, at the end of 2016 there were 127 urban rail transit lines in operation in China, with a total length of 3838 km, while a further 193 lines were under construction, for an additional 3700 km.
In terms of fully automated metros, after a small-capacity line (less than 300 passengers per train) opened in Guangzhou in 2010, two fully automated lines are set to be inaugurated in the coming days: the Yanfang line in Beijing, the first domestically-produced fully automated metro line, is due to open before the end of the year and Line 10 in Shanghai is to start fully automated operation on 1 January 2018. Fully automated lines are planned in several other cities in China.
During the meeting, members of the Observatory of automated metros delivered presentations to Chinese metro authorities and operators on global trends in metro automation. In return, key Chinese metro operators and related organising authorities provided an introduction to automation projects and developments in Chinese cities. Experiences and views were exchanged on the role of full metro automation in the strategy of Chinese metro networks for the future.
The UITP-CAMET Workshop included a technical visit to the Beijing metro network central operations control centre and to the Yanfang line, hosted by the Beijing MTR Construction Administration Corporation, which has built and will operate the line.
In June 2017, UITP and CAMET signed a memorandum of cooperation (MOC) with China Association of Metros, the first result of which has been the organisation of the joint workshop in Beijing.