Munich scraps plans to build Transrapid train line

It’s always exciting to build fast and flashy transportation, so when plans were made last fall to build a Transrapid maglev train in Munich, the celebratory champagne flowed. But according to German sources, those plans have now been scrapped, and the high-speed train which was to connect the Munich train station and airport, will no longer materialize.

The Transrapid train was to be a magnetic levitation rail link; a high-speed monorail that moves uses magnetic levitation. The only other city to have such transportation is Shanghai. But fancy transportation comes with a price tag, and the originally projected 1.85 billion euros quickly rose to 3 billion. At that price, the German government, the state of Bavaria and companies involved decided to ditch the project.

Maglev technology is exciting — Shanghai’s is the fastest train in the world — but unfortunately we will have to wait just a little longer before we see a European version.