If you had been browsing social media some time last year there’s a strong chance you might have seen a video showing a crazy elevated bus concept which would allow traffic to pass underneath it.
Well China has actually built it.
This is the Transit Elevated Bus (TEB), otherwise known as a “land airbus” and it’s an enormous elevated transit vehicle that runs on giant rails either side of the motorway.
By being elevated the bus can use the existing road network without needing to stop traffic every time it takes on passengers.
The TEB had originally started life as nothing more than a concept - a solution for China’s ever-increasing congestion crisis.
Spanning over 25 feet wide and 75 feet long the TEB gives around 7 feet of clearance underneath it which should be enough for most cars but probably not enough for vans or trucks.
The bus uses an all-electric system and can carry around 300 passengers up to 40mph.
Chinese news agency Xinhua News confirms that the bus had its first test-drive this week.
So are we going to start seeing these on the streets of China? Well probably not for a while. The test run might have been successful but just because it technically works doesn’t mean that it’s feasible in the real world.
For starters there’s the unfortunate issue of height. By introducing these onto major highways you would be effectively restricting the types of vehicles that could travel on those roads.
Then there’s the impact it has on the car drivers themselves. It might look like a normal tunnel from the underside but you have to remember that this is a tunnel that’s moving, quite fast.