The New Eurasian Land Bridge, or the New Silk Road, will be one of the big global stories of this era — and my new project.
When news of China’s “New Silk Road” was released a few years back I couldn’t help but find myself muttering a very satisfying “hell yeah.” A massive infrastructural and political project that’s overtly opaque, extremely relevant, and globally important that spans across a massive swath of geography which would require some irrational writer to dump years of their life and far more money than they could ever make back traveling to research just seemed too perfect. Although at that time I was buried in ghost cities. That project was gaining momentum, and eventually lead to a book. That’s done now, and I’m ready to start my next big project. So the next year or two of my travels will be spent between Lianyungang and Rotterdam, focusing on the “land bridge” that will soon connect them.
Although there are currently many contrasting versions of the actual routes, the vision behind this plan is to build a network of rail lines, highways, logistics centers, and new cities connecting China with Central Asia and Europe, with off-shots tying in many other nations and regions along the way. It’s a throwback to the old Silk Road, and is a good vantage point to watch how China is gaining influence and adjusting the balance of geo-political affiliations around the world. Though it’s being developed somewhat quietly, this project and its broader implications will be one of the big global stories of the coming decades.
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