Thursday, March 30, 2006

Watch out for the imaginary rail cars 

As anyone who listens to the Venezuelan opposition knows there are no public works in Venezulea – no new schools, no new hospitals, no new bridges, no new dams, and no new railroads. Having noted that please therefore realize that all of what is to follow is presumabely ficticious.

Drivers on the main highway between Barquisimeto and Caracas will need to be aware there may be delays and extensive traffic jams. The reason is that the first 52 passenger cars for the new Caracas-Tuy rail line will be transported by truck from Barquisimeto where they were made to Charallave outside of Caracas. This will begin next week and will consist of a convoy transporting two rail cars, every five days. They will only travel only 5 KPH and traffic will be restricted around them so expect delays. Of course, given that this is all likely to be imaginary you needn’t worry – if you get stuck in a traffic jam just remember it is most likely imaginary too.

For those of you who don’t know Tuy is outside of Caracas and has become essentially a bedroom community. The imaginary train line is to run between the terminus of the Caracas Metro’s number 3 line and Tuy. What is strange is that for this train to reach the number 3 Metro line it would have to go further than it does in this map. Someone told me they are presently extending the number 3 line and when I was in Caracas I saw lots of work being done on it. But thinking about it now I realize I must have been imagining it.

Again, the Caracas-Tuy train isn’t really being built. But if it were being built here is what it might look like.

It’s really amazing how real all those bridges and tunnels look even though they don’t exist. I’ve been told that Chavistas are the foremost Photoshop experts in the entire world.

Also, this isn’t the only imaginary rail project being worked on. There is a huge project to rehabilitate the old rail link from Barquisimeto to Puerto Cabello which is a port on the coast. This project is costing more than $500 million dollars (I’m not sure if that is real or imaginary money). To facilitate its construction they have built an imaginary railway factory in Barquisimeto that will be making the rails for the 8,000 kilometers of railway Venezuela intends to build. Ultimately, the factory is expected to build the railway cars as well.

Of course, given that Chavista imagination knows no bounds they are also building imaginary rail lines in Valencia and Maracaibo plus an imaginary trolley bus in Barquisimeto.

Imaginary light rail cars in Valencia

Imaginary station almost complete in Valencia

Imaginary interior of an imaginary station in Valencia

Stained glass in a Valencia station. A nice imaginary touch

Imaginary station under construction in Maracaibo

A big, if imaginary, trench in Maracaibo

All of this is on top of the imaginary subway lines being built in Caracas and the imaginary train line to Los Teques.

Imaginary rails in Los Teques

An imaginary station

Imaginary tunnels

I would like to go on and talk about the imaginary schools and hospitals and dams and the like being built by the government. But its late and I’m out of time. So what they are like will just have to be left to your imagination.


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