Standing in front of the station in Wuhan, it has little to hint at leisurely steam locomotives but has more in common with a 21st century airport. The futuristic glass facade measures up to sixty meters and you feel tiny in front of it. Once you have passed the obligatory security checks, the size of the station unfolds more clearly. With an area of 120,000 square metres, which spreads out under two monumental wings, the station is as big as three football stadiums. It is located on the high-speed Beijing-Canton line and was opened in December 2009. The construction cost about 14 billion yuan (about 1.4 billion euros) and has eleven lines and twenty platforms.
The bustle on normal working days is similar to that of large stations in Beijing or Shanghai. But what makes Wuhan station unique is its architecture. In the huge entrance hall, the characteristic roof is particularly striking. It resembles the wings of a crane, because the design of the whole building is inspired by the crane. In Chinese mythology, the crane represents longevity and the bird also adorns the official logo of the city of Wuhan.