China’s bizarre elevated bus concept has begun testing in Hebei province. The Transit Elevated Bus rides on rails and has a passenger cabin that glides 2 metres above the road, allowing ordinary traffic to pass safely beneath.
A test run was conducted along a 300m track. Powered by electricity, the 72ft long, 25ft wide TEB is capable of carrying 300 passengers. Up to four TEBs can be linked like the carriages of a train, while it’s said to be able to reach up to 60kmh.
“The biggest advantage is that the bus will save lots of road space,” the chief engineer, Song Youzhou, told state-media agency Xinhua earlier this year.
“The TEB has the same functions as the subway, while its cost of construction is less than one fifth of the subway,” another engineer Bai Zhiming told news outlet CCTV.
According to its designers, one TEB could replace 40 ordinary buses.
The design was first shown at the 19th China Beijing International high-Tech Expo in May. One month later, developers promised a working model by August. It is not currently clear whether the TEB will be rolled out for public use, but we wouldn’t rule it out given the speed at which this prototype was built.
The Chinese government has reportedly shown keen interest in the project, as have governments of other highly populated regions including India.