A train leaving Beijing West Rail Station. The world's longest high-speed rail line links Beijing and Guangzhou, China's southern hub 2,300 kilometers away. Getty Images
A worker preparing for the opening of the Wuhan Railway Station in 2009. High-speed rail service began in China in 2007 and now has the world's longest bullet train network, with routes nearing 10,000 kilometers in all. Getty Images
Waiting on a train in Nanjing. The national railway operator runs high-speed locomotives marked "The Harmony" in Chinese. Getty Images
The Shenzhen North Railway Station, near Hong Kong, was completed in 2011. The Beijing-Guangzhou line will eventually be linked up with Shenzhen and Hong Kong. Getty Images
A 2011 collision that resulted in 40 deaths has led many to question whether the focus on construction goals is detracting from safety. Train speeds were slowed after the incident. Getty Images
Looking at a map of China's rail network in Guangzhou. Officials have said that by 2020, China's rail system -- high-speed and otherwise -- will have 120,000 kilometers of track.