In December, the city of Changsha, China started trial runs on a recently completed 11.5-mile urban low-speed maglev train line (<75 mph). How is that beneficial? It can climb 30% grades while regular adhesion light rail can only deal with around 8%, produces less noise and thus less neighborhood opposition, offers a smoother ride than even light rail and costs around US $65 million per mile, or just about 10% more than our own Madison bus rapid transit.

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