Saturday, July 31, 2010

Chinese Highways

China now has about 65,000 kilometers of freeway criss-crossing the country. In 1989, the number of kilometers was zero. To get a sense of the magnitude of this achievement, the Interstate Highway system is about 75,000 kilometers long and took about 40 years to complete.

This does not mean the US should go on a freeway building spree (the marginal productivity of length almost surely decreases in length); it is just one measure of explaining how China has developed so rapidly.