Amazing Traffic-Swallowing TEB-1 Bus Debuts In China

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Photo by Reuters / Stringer

A model of a innovative street-straddling bus called Transit Elevated Bus is seen after a test run in Qinhuangdao, Hebei Province, China, August 3, 2016. Chinese engineers have built a full-sized test model of the much-anticipated TEB-1 straddling bus concept. First revealed in 2010, the bus promises to beat traffic by tiptoeing over it – with wheels at the edges of the road, it acts rather like an enormous tunnel, appearing to swallow the traffic that passes underneath.

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Photo by Luo Xiaoguang / Xinhua via AP Photo

he first test drive took place in the city of Qinhuangdao, in the Hebei province of China. Although limited to just a 300 metre route, the successful test could pave the way for more thorough and challenging trials before an eventual commercial roll out of the vehicle. At 21 metres long and 7.6 metres wide, it straddles two lanes of traffic, and the passenger compartment of the TEB-1 (Transport Elevated Bus) is understandably very roomy, with a capacity of 300 passengers.

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Photo by Reuters / Stringer

With the ability to link up to four TEB-1s together, up to 1,200 people could travel together – a feat that would require 15 double decker buses to achieve. Passengers will travel in 18 seats down either side of the passenger compartments, as well as circular seats in the middle able to seat ten passengers each. There’s also a huge amount of standing room for busier times.

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Photo by Reuters / Stringer

Engineers told news outlet CCTV: “The TEB-1 has the same functions as the subway, while its cost of construction is less than one fifth of the subway”.

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Photo by Luo Xiaoguang / Xinhua via AP Photo

The same concerns remain over the viability of the TEB as a real solution – particularly in how it will handle vehicles turning off or onto the roads it’s travelling on. It’s also not known how taller vehicles will pass the TEB – a stuck lorry could cause some lengthy tailbacks. The TEB-1 is the first step towards a full-scale test, but engineers have not confirmed when this might happen.

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Photo by Luo Xiaoguang / Xinhua via AP Photo