In most of the US, we make little use of trains as a system of mass transport. In some major cities trains and subways get people to and from the office and home, but with the spread out arrangement of many cities and the lack of a rail infrastructure most of us use personal vehicles or busses for transport. Japan has had the seriously cool and fast maglev train system that we generally call bullet trains for a long time now. The current trains have a top speed of about 150 MPH.
Maglev trains if you aren’t familiar use superconducting magnets on the train and coils under the tracks to levitate the train and allow it to travel with much less friction at much higher speeds. Japan has given the go ahead to Central Japan Railway to start construction on a new maglev train system that will have a top speed more than twice that of the current lines at 313 MPH. The new super high-speed trains will connect Tokyo, Nagoya, and Osaka.
The project has a massive price tag of 9 trillion yen. Apparently, most of that massive budget will be absorbed in the building of a large system of tunnels that will be required to connect the three cities by 313 MPH rail. Much of the track route is already built though the tunnels will make up 60% of the total route. The tunnels aren’t expected to be complete until 2014. The Tokyo-Nagoya route is not slated for completion until 2027 and the Tokyo-Osaka route is set for completion in 2045.