advertisement
advertisement
  • 03.25.09

IBM Jumps on the High-Speed Rail to China

Oil prices may not be rising quite as dramatically as they were a year ago, but mass transportation–and more specifically, high-speed rail–is still growing in scope and importance.

2364604496_258d386579

The computer giant announced plans today for high-speed rail projects in China, Taiwan, and the Netherlands. IBM will be responsible for managing maintenance, logistics, and IT needs in the China and Taiwan projects, while the Netherlands will rely on the company for resource utilization. It’s not a small job.

advertisement

In the Netherlands, IBM will oversee nearly 5,000 trains passing through a network of 279 stations. The Guangzhou Metro Corporation (GZ Metro) transports 2 million passengers per day across 60 stations, and is investing $1.76 billion this year to expand the network.

All of this is great news for denizens of these three countries, but what about those of us in the United States? When do we get our fancy high-speed rail lines? Relatively soon, if the U.S. government’s $8 billion in rail-line stimulus funds goes ahead as planned. And when we do get our high-speed rail, IBM is likely to be a part of it. The company, which manages Amtrak’s reservation system, is already angling for a chunk of the stimulus money. In the end, IBM might be known more for its ubiquitous transportation software than its consumer technology.

Related: The Fast Company 50 – #19 IBM

[Via IBM]

About the author

Ariel Schwartz is a Senior Editor at Co.Exist. She has contributed to SF Weekly, Popular Science, Inhabitat, Greenbiz, NBC Bay Area, GOOD Magazine and more.

More

Video