Harbin metro testing in August 2012
Harbin's 17.5 km underground subway opened in September 2013. It is expected to be the first line of a 10 line, 340 km system. But there were traces of a "mystery subway" long before this real one opened.
According to 1997 Jane's World Railways, Harbin (formerly known as Ping
Kiang) has a 5.4 mile metro. No one who has lived in Harbin who I
spoke with appeared to know of it's existence. An unfinished 9 km metro
line was also
been reported by
Metropla.net. This would be in line with an article which
reports a line to begin
construction in 2003 which is based on "the original
“7381” civil air-defense project of 10.1
km." The report said the 24.6 km line could be opened as
early as 2005.
Here, plans for a 17.3 km, 15 station light rail (elevated metro in western terms)
were shown, but not much
Digital Harbin also presented
a feature about an "existing 10.1 km, 5 station existing tunnel",
and a submitted proposal to develop it into a 24.6 km, 24
station subway, including 18 stations for the 17.5 km main line
(suspiciously similar to the light rail proposal) and 6 stations for
the 7.1 km subsidiary line.
Harbin Municipal Council
City Administration Building
Finally, in December 2006, ground was broken on a 20 station, 14.4 km
metro. The route is said to follow the emergency evacuation tunnels
left over from WWII. This Youtube video
shows the subway construction and the old tunnels.
is also known for the notorious