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JR Tokai unveils plans for maglev stations

14 Comments

Central Japan Railway Co (JR Tokai) on Wednesday unveiled details of its route for its magnetically levitated trains which are scheduled to begin service between Tokyo and Nagoya in 2027.

JR Tokai said there will be four stations on the 286-kilometer route between Shinagawa and Nagoya. The Shinagawa and Nagoya stations will be about 40 meters underground, Sankei Shimbun reported. The first station after Shinagawa will be Sagamihara in Kanagawa Prefecture (also underground). The next three stops will be above ground in Kofu, Yamanashi Prefecture, Iida, Nagano Prefecture and in Nakatsugawa, Gifu Prefecture.

The travel time will be just 40 minutes, an hour faster than the current time. Nearly 90% of the journey will be underground or through tunnels, JR Tokai officials said, Sankei reported

JR Tokai has been conducting test runs since August on a 42.8-kilometer track in Yamanashi Prefecture.

The L0 maglev train, which is driverless, has five cars, 2.9 meters wide and 3.1 meters high. Its maximum speed is 500 kilometers per hour. The current fastest train in Japan is the Hayabusa shinkansen which travels at 320 kph.

JR Tokai also said that it would be impossible to have the maglev train in service in time for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. Company president Yoshiomi Yamada told a news conference that it will take 10 years to build the tracks and stations and the work cannot be completed by 2020, Sankei reported.

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14 Comments
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MarkX

Nope the construction of the Chuo Shinkansen is funded completely by JR Tokai through their own revenue and financing. They took this course to insure that there will be no governmental meddling through out planning and construction process.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

MarkX, of course the Shinkansens were built with government money. They were actually RUN by the government. I am just repeating what they stated and I don't think calling people delusional is appropriate without proof of public money being put in without our knowing. (The initial research is not relevant in this case, mind you.)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Tsrnow, I hope you know that all the Shinkansen lines are built by the gov't using public money. Then they turn the lines over to the private companies. The same will happen with this maglev system. If you think there will be no public money you are delusional!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The reason for being able to make it to Nagoya in 40 minutes, in addition to it rocketing along at 500 km/hr, is that the route is in a straighter line than the existing shinkansen route, and this means digging through mountains. As for earthquakes, the magnitude observed is a fraction of that of that felt on the surface.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

ka-chan

It doesn't matter if it's evolution, convolution or dissolution; if that's the way they've decided to do it, then they'll do it according to the technical circumstances of today, not 50 years ago; and putting track underground and through tunnels involves more work than laying them on the surface.

As for underground vs elevated, I'm inclined to agree with you - I wouldn't relish the thought of being stuck 40 metres underground with a tsunami flowing over my head. Though I imagine a major earthquake causing a train travelling at 500kph to jump off elevated tracks over a heavily-built-up area would bring its own problems.

Personally I would consider not being able to see Tokyo a plus.....

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

The cost will be enormous, with the taxpayer footing a large part of the bill.

They are a private company and the fee will come out of their pockets (as they are saying...). Well, if the government was in on this, this will never happen, nor any decision will ever be made on the whereabouts of the stations without huge amounts of yen moving around underground before the Maglev does...!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I can see the green car brigade loving Maglev, and it'll be a great Plan B for inclement weather. However, billing Maglev fares to clients will go down like a fart in a spacesuit.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Cleo, scoobysnax1, The Mag Lev is just an evolution it is not a revolution. Actually neither was the shinkansen. first planned in 1940 at a slower speed. As for it underground, that is just stupid. To put something 40 meters underground, 8 or 9 stories, in a flood area. So what is going to happen when a medium size tsunami hits Tokyo or a major quake hits and people will have to climb 8 stories if lucky to get to the surface. It should be elevated not a subway. See nothing but blackness until you get out of Tokyo. I also think they plan for a lot of new tunnels. What an inviting tourist ad, "Ride the new Mag Lev, see from the inside". Wonder if you would even be able see Fuji-san? Hmm...I think I just talked myself out of riding it. For a half hour improvement, I'll rather see the countryside and Tokyo Tower.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Also, I would have started with building a better Tokyo to Narita airport line using maglev, and get people to and from the airport in 15 minutes rather than 70 minutes. The current NEX and Kesei Skyliner lines are a complete joke!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Well said Cleo. An engineering marvel of the 60's shouldnt be compared to the advance of technology and growth in this century

0 ( +1 / -1 )

So JR is going to throw the whole Shinkansen Line in the toilet to just to run a faster train? Why? Why not just continue making improvements to the current line. Also, what about Yokohama?? Yokohama is the second largest city in Japan and you're skipping it completely to build a station in some nowhere land like Sagamihara?

JR Tokai also said that it would be impossible to have the maglev train in service in time for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.

Nonsense! If you had put enough manpower behind it, you could have easily had it completed by 2020. Japan has been screwing around with maglev technology for several decades now, and haven't really put it into motion until now. And because of that, China and Germany has overtaken us on it.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

the private Central Japan Railway can't do 1/2 of what the government run JR could do some 60 years ago. What does this say about the men of today's Japan?

Apples and oranges. How much of the first shinkansen line was built underground? How much of the first shinkansen line had to cope with driverless trains?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The original shinkansen started construction on 20th of April, 1959 and started service on 1st of October, 1964, days before the start of the 1964 Tokyo Olympics. That is about 5 1/2 years to construct the first shinkansen line from Tokyo to Osaka. That is about 91 meters a year. with more stations done by Hideo Shima, Chief Engineer, and Shinji Sogou, President of Japan National Railways. Now this new train which is going ony 2/3 the distance can't be done in 7 years but will take 14 years. So they can do 47 km/ year but only 24. Seems that it was a mistake to have broken up JR. With Japan's national pride on the line, So the private Central Japan Railway can't do 1/2 of what the government run JR could do some 60 years ago. What does this say about the men of today's Japan? They can't even try, how sad.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'm sorry, but after watching the news last night and all the excitement about this new maglev system, is it really necessary to build it. The cost will be enormous, with the taxpayer footing a large part of the bill. And all so you can get from Tokyo to Nagoya in 40 minutes! What is the point? The president of JR Tokai said that in the future Osaka, nagoya Tokyo will be like one big city. Ok what about the rest of Japan?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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