Israel and China are helping each other out on moving railway passengers. In China, Israeli tech firm Radware is supplying China Railway with e-ticketing equipment, while that same company will be working with Israel’s Solel Boneh to build Tel Aviv’s Red Line train.
In recent months, China Railway began selling tickets online, a service that has become so popular that it overwhelmed the network. With close to a billion passengers a year, the railway sells millions of tickets a day – and to keep the network robust, the company chose a hardware and software solution from Radware.
Radware’s application delivery controller (ADC) provides virtualization, integrated application acceleration and on-demand scalability that allows the railway to quickly determine prices, capacity, and statistics on how many passengers are using the railway.
Meanwhile, China Railway’s Tunnel Group, along with Shikun Binui Solel Boneh Infrastructure group has won a a $750 million tender by Israel’s NTA Metropolitan Mass Transit System to build the Red Line, the first in the planned subway network that will eventually crisscross the Tel Aviv metropolitan area.
The Red Line will originate in Petah Tikvah and continue along Jabotinsky Street in Bnei Brak, and through Ramat Gan. The line will continue to the Arlozorov train station, run along Begin Street and near the Azrieli Center, from where it will continue on to the south of the Kirya, Manshiyya, Jerusalem Blvd. in Jaffa, and end in southern Bat Yam. In the future the line may be extended to Moshe Dayan interchange in Rishon Lezion.
The line will extend for 24 kilometers, 11 of which will be underground – most of that within Tel Aviv. Twenty-four of the line’s stations will be above ground, and 10 will be underground. The plan is for trains to run about a minute and a half apart during rush hours, and three to four minutes apart off-peak.
It should be noted that the Red Line – along with seven other routes – have been in the planning stage for many years, with bureaucratic snafus and budget shortfalls delaying progress since at least 2000, when the current mass transit plan for Tel Aviv was first approved. The total cost for the Red Line is estimated at $3 billion.
NTA is a government company founded in 1997 for the purpose of providing appropriate solutions for Tel Aviv’s transit problems. The Red Line is one of eight mass transit light rail/subway lines that the company hopes to build in the coming years to solve the transportation problems in the center of the country.