An apartment block in the central Chinese city of Chongqing may look like your typical residential building, but it has a unique feature that literally sticks out.
For more than a decade now, trains have been passing through the building and it seems the structure has been working quite well for the residents. According to the builders, the creation of the railway line through the block was unavoidable, Mashable reports.
Since the train runs on rubber tires with air suspension, it produces just 75.8 decibels of sound, which is just 10 dB more than two people chatting. The state-owned media has reported that the residents have never even complained about the noise.
A resident from the building’s ninth floor told Chongqing Evening News that the rare moments she could hear the trains are when the surrounding neighborhood becomes silent.
“It isn’t really noise and doesn’t hurt the ears,” she explained.
Another homeowner who lives on the 11th floor supported the claim.
“We’ve lived here for nearly nine years, and there’s not one instance where the monorail’s noise was the cause of complaint,” she was quoted as saying. “The cars on the street are even louder.”
Merely designing the complex structure reportedly took engineers two years, while building it took a construction team almost four. The railway line, which was finished in 2005 as part of the Chongqing Line 2, covering the entire southern end of the city.
Since the building’s first five floors consisted of commercial space, the train doesn’t run past any residential units. The 9th to the 19th are the residential floors.
The train passes through the 6th and 8th floor of the building, where passengers get on or off at the Liziba station.
According to station design lead Ye Tianyi, the train runs through 132 meters (433 ft) of the building
Ye told the Chongqing Evening News that the building does not feel the train’s vibrations since the support structures for the building are separated from the rail’s.
“Between the six pillars that support the rail and the building, there is about 20 cm (7.9 in) of distance,” Ye explained.