Tech

This underground train will take you from Manchester to Liverpool in seven minutes

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Gary Ogden
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A train from Manchester to Liverpool will take, on average, about an hour, or if there’s a leaf on the track, five weeks. That’s why a private consortium (sounds ominous) is planning on creating a Maglev train that will connect the two cities in SEVEN MINUTES. That’s the same amount of time it takes to get from Oxford Circus to Embankment. The same amount of time it takes to cook a steak. The same amount of time it takes to have a quick wa-- you get the idea. It is ridiculous.

The proposed line will also get you from Manchester to Leeds in around nine minutes, and Liverpool to Hull in about 29 minutes – a journey that normally takes three hours. The reason for this speed is that the train has no wheels – it instead levitates on a cushion of air above the track, using magnets. It’s quieter, smoother and obviously, much faster than existing trains.

A spokesman for Direct City Networks said: “We are in the early stages of feasibility work to produce a costed and robust business case for the creation of a high-speed underground line connecting Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds and Hull. We will continue to work with partners and stakeholders to advance our plans and will be in a position to reveal more details in the very near future.”

Interestingly, it doesn’t appear that it’ll be your common-or-garden train carriage either – passengers will travel in small individual pods, but with “trains” departing every 60 to 90 seconds. Obviously, this wild invention from the future isn’t going to be cheap – just the part between Manchester and Leeds could cost up to £3.7bn, but that shady consortium we mentioned earlier says that it’ll create 48,000 jobs and will raise revenue between the two cities, so will make it worthwhile.

This is all very optimistic of course, especially when you consider that there are already Maglev trains in around the world, including Japan, China and Shanghai, with the latter reporting unfortunately huge losses since its creation.

Either way, it’ll certainly be worth it for whoever makes the first viral video of them racing the train on foot between the two stops.

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Gary Ogden

Shortlist writer and "the least woke person in the office", Gary Ogden, likes horror movies, Cheestrings, tapping his leg under the desk, "having a drink", PDAs, not having eczema anymore, hiding from responsibility, screaming into the mirror whenever he is alone, and assorted other things. Mainly the eczema thing though. @garyblogden

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