daily menu » rate the banner | guess the city | one on oneforums map | privacy policy | DMCA | news magazine | posting guidelines

Go Back   SkyscraperCity > Infrastructure and Mobility Forums > Subways and Urban Transport

Subways and Urban Transport Metros, subways, light rail, trams, buses and other local transport systems



Global Announcement

As a general reminder, please respect others and respect copyrights. Go here to familiarize yourself with our posting policy.


Reply

 
Thread Tools
Old May 2nd, 2011, 10:33 AM   #2481
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

JR East opens new station retail zone at Ueno Station

A few belated photos of the new ecute Ueno, which made its grand opening on 2011.03.31, a week after the original scheduled opening on 2011.03.04. The first phase (14 stores) opened on 2010.12.18, but the remaining 67 stores opened their doors on 2011.03.31.

Unfortunately, this was only 2-3 weeks after the earthquake, so there weren’t many photos available of good quality.

First set (2011.03.31):
Source: http://ameblo.jp/soft37/

The latest addition to the ecute family of JR East ekinaka (station retail) facilities is located on the third floor of JR Ueno Station. Of the 67 tenants that opened stores on 2011.03.31, 26 were making their first ventures into station retail. This is an ekinaka in its “purest” form—you must pass through the faregates and enter the paid area of the JR station to visit the shops. Shouldn’t be a problem given the JR station gets about 178,500 daily entries, or about 357,000 passengers daily.



NEWDAYS (JR East-operated convenience store)



Hara Donuts
The space occupies an area between the Ueno Park Exit and the Panda Bridge Exit of the station, spanning the Ueno Park Exit Transfer Hall and the Main Transfer Hall. They crammed a large number of stores into a small area… This donut shop is sandwiched between the stairwells to Platforms 11 / 12 (Jōban Rapid Line) and Platforms 16 / 17 (limited express platforms).



Humming Café



Second set (2011.03.31):
Source: http://8969.at.webry.info/



A new concierge service, mainly targeting foreign tourists.



At the time, Jōban Rapid Line service to Mito and Katsuta had just been recently restored.



New panda display… The new panda at Ueno Zoo made its debut on 2011.04.01.



Bonus shot at Nippori Station, showing the “meager” schedule of the Jōban Rapid Line following the quake and tsunami.



In addition to ecute Ueno, Keiyō Street, another ekinaka facility near the Yaesu South Exit of JR Tōkyō Station, celebrated its grand opening on 2011.03.20. The first phase opened in 2010.11 with eight stores, but the second phase opening on 2011.03.20 added another 18 stores, 12 of which were first ventures into station retail. This is a smaller-scale facility compared to ecute Ueno, and is located outside the faregates.
quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote

Sponsored Links
Old May 2nd, 2011, 10:34 AM   #2482
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

JR Ueno Station signage changes: Part 1

In conjunction with the ecute Ueno opening on 2011.03.31, JR East also revised some of its signage at Ueno Station. Here’s a quick overview:
Source: http://okiraku-goraku.com/

Line diagram for Platform 1 (Keihin-Tōhoku Line for Ōmiya).
Left column is for rapid trains, right column is for local trains. Major stations (Akabane, Urawa, and Ōmiya) are highlighted in gray.



Line diagram for Platform 2 (Yamanote Line counter-clockwise loop for Ikebukuro and Shinjuku)



Line diagram for Platform 3 (Yamanote Line clockwise loop for Tōkyō and Shinagawa).
Perhaps a little curious that they chose to highlight Ebisu and not Shibuya…



Line diagram for Platform 4 (Keihin-Tōhoku Line for Ōfuna).
The Keihin-Tōhoku Line tends to get overshadowed a bit by the Yamanote Line, but serves as one of the critical links in the JR East network. At 81.2 km long, it takes about two hours to travel between Ōfuna and Ōmiya.



Line diagram for Platforms 5-8 and 13-15 (Takasaki Line and Utsunomiya Line outbound).
These platforms are shared between the two lines, so both lines are shown in a single diagram. On the left, the Utsunomiya Line goes all the way to Kuroiso (limit of direct-service trains on the Utsunomiya Line), while on the right, the Takasaki Line is shown with both the Jōetsu Line (up to Shin-Maebashi) and Ryōmō Line (up to Maebashi). The stopping patterns are a little more complex than for the Yamanote Line or Keihin-Tōhoku Line, and vary based on time of day, so these are distinguished by the shapes and colors of the station markers. Unfortunately, there’s always the tradeoff of too much information should they choose to go the “one line per service” design like a typical private railway line diagram.



Line diagram for Platforms 9-12 (Jōban Rapid Line).
On the left in gray is the Jōban Local Line, which through-services with the Tōkyō Metro Chiyoda Line at Kita-Senju. In thick green is the Jōban Rapid Line inner-suburban services up to Toride, with through-services to / from the Narita Line at Abiko. In thin blue is the Jōban Rapid Line outer-suburban services—the diagram stops at Katsuta, but a few runs extend further out. The Jōban Line is quadruple-tracked between Kita-Senju and Toride, with the gray and blue / green on separate tracks.

quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 2nd, 2011, 10:35 AM   #2483
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

JR Ueno Station signage changes: Part 2

Now, some of the other signage types:
Source: http://okiraku-goraku.com/

First, platform information and line diagrams. These are a similar design to the ones at Tōkyō Station. These are perhaps easier to understand than the simple vertical ones in the previous post, as they breakdown some of the more complex services on the Takasaki Line, Utsunomiya Line, and Jōban Rapid Line.



Platform layout and station map. Pretty easy to understand while still processing a lot of info.
Ueno is one of the more complex terminals, with elevated platforms on 3F (Platforms 1-12) and ground-level platforms (Platforms 13-17), which is why the map is split in two. Technically, there’s also underground platforms for the Shinkansen (Platforms 19-22).



Another version of the line diagrams, for display next to the train schedules. These are pretty much the same as the ones in the first picture, and breakdown all the regular services on both the Takasaki and Utsunomiya Lines, as well as showing the connections onto the Jōetsu and Ryōmō Lines. Black is local, red is rapid, blue is commuter rapid.



Same type of diagram for the Jōban Rapid Line.
As a result of historical naming conventions, the green is usually referred to as the “Jōban Rapid Line” while the blue is simply “Jōban Line”, despite the fact that the latter serves the same or fewer stations on the shared section between Toride and Ueno. The blue one in the middle cut off at Tsuchiura is the “special rapid”.

quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 2nd, 2011, 10:36 AM   #2484
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

JR Shinjuku Station construction update

A short update of the ongoing work at the New South Exit of JR Shinjuku Station:
Source: http://okiraku-goraku.com/

The latest big change was on 2011.02.27, when the current stairwell for Platforms 3 / 4 (located inside the passage between the old South Exit and the Southern Terrace Exit) was closed and a new stairwell opened in a separate location alongside the stairwell for Platforms 5 / 6, near the New South Exit. Simple overview of the change:



In short, it’s a bit longer walking distance for users of the Southern Terrace Exit or those trying to transfer to other lines, but a shorter distance for users of the New South Exit.

Old stairwell is boarded up.



Entering the station through the New South Exit and proceeding down the passage to the new stairwell…
The stickers hiding the Platforms 3/ 4 half of these hanging signs have now been removed.



New stairwell.
Platforms 3 / 4 are for northbound Saikyō Line and Shōnan-Shinjuku Line trains. Platform 3 is used exclusively by the Saikyō Line, so it uses only the single aqua green of the Saikyō Line. Platform 4 is shared, so it also has the orange + blue of the Shōnan-Shinjuku Line.



New stairwell, from platform level. Looks like a temporary stairwell, but who knows… Maybe they will touch it up a bit later and make it permanent (?).

quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 2nd, 2011, 08:16 PM   #2485
k.k.jetcar
Registered User
 
k.k.jetcar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Sapporo
Posts: 1,811
Likes (Received): 452

Quote:
Perhaps a little curious that they chose to highlight Ebisu and not Shibuya…
Perhaps Ebisu provides easier transfers distance wise to the Shonan Shinjuku and Saikyo Line trains. The case may be made for Osaki too, though that station is a bit too close to Shinagawa, and Ebisu is much more of a destination in and of itself.
k.k.jetcar no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 2nd, 2011, 10:30 PM   #2486
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

JRTR releases latest issue

The latest issue of Japan Railway and Transport Review (funded by JR East)—No. 56 for December 2010—was released online. A series of really interesting articles, focusing on property development in and around stations. These articles are all available in Japanese, English, German, French, and Spanish.

JRTR No. 56 (Dec 2010)
Development of Stations and Surrounding Areas
quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 3rd, 2011, 10:54 AM   #2487
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

Kishibe Station construction update

Short update on the construction work at Kishibe Station on the JR Kyōto Line.
Source: http://saitoshika.blog119.fc2.com/

They are constructing an elevated station concourse and a new passage and pedestrian bridge at the station.



Exterior of the pedestrian bridge / public passage across Suita Freight Terminal is complete.



Zoom-in of the north end of the public passage, which will open onto the station’s North Exit transit plaza.





One of the 205 series units returned to the Kyōto Line from the Hanwa Line approaches the station. These were repainted in a blue-and-orange scheme to blend in with the 321 series.





Northeast end of the station, which is being extended.

quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 3rd, 2011, 10:55 AM   #2488
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

Seibu Ikebukuro Line grade-separation construction updates: Part 1

The latest milestone in the grade-separation of the Seibu Ikebukuro Line around Shakujii Kōen Station was reached on 2011.04.17, when the outbound track of the line was elevated. Half of the new elevated outbound platform was also opened for service. The switchout was a typical late-evening-into-early-morning affair.

As this is both a grade-separation and quadruple-tracking project, the next big milestone will come with the construction of the second outbound track and completion of the rest of the elevated outbound platform.

First, a few videos to give an overview of the latest work… Not the best quality, but still useful.

Cab view on a Hannō-bound express from Ikebukuro to Tokorozawa, before the switchout.
In these two vids, the outbound track is still at ground level west of Nerima Takanodai.
Source: TokyoMinkle on YouTube

Part 1: Ikebukuro to Shakujii Kōen
There’s some nice parallel running scenes with a 30000 series local starting at 7:30.



Part 2: Shakujii Kōen to Tokorozawa
At 2:40, we pass Hōya, where there are various track and platform improvements underway. Towards the end, you can also see some of the station improvements underway at Tokorozawa.



Now, cab views on the first day of service on the newly elevated outbound track…
Source: okirakugoraku on YouTube

Outbound, Nerima Takanodai to Shakujii Kōen.
Some of the curves and jogs for the outbound track are a little odd, but this is only the temporary layout until they can free up more space to build the track in its final position and alignment. In particular, the switches just after leaving Nerima Takanodai and the jog towards the inbound track at the bottom of the ramp up to Shakujii Kōen should eventually be replaced when the time comes. Also interesting to note is the half-installed double cross-over at 1:00… Never seen one like this before.



Outbound, Shakujii Kōen to Ōizumi Gakuen.
While stopped at the platform, we can see the work in progress on the double-crossover just west of the station, half of which dead ends in front of some catenary masts. This outbound track is currently using what will eventually be the second pocket track in the middle for turning back trains, but the fourth track has yet to be constructed… First comes the removal of the previous outbound track at ground level. The ramp back down to ground level is quite steep and includes some fairly sharp curves.



Inbound, Ōizumi Gakuen to Shakujii Kōen.
Around 1:05 as the train reaches the top of the ramp, we can see how the first completed siding bends towards the inbound track a bit. Given that these two tracks on the right are on ballast while the inbound track is on concrete sleepers, we can surmise that this is not the final design and that these will eventually be realigned. The other thing to keep in mind is that elevation to Shakujii Kōen is only the first phase of the project… The second phase extends the aerial structure out to Ōizumi Gakuen, so it’s likely there’s still many more changes in store.



Inbound, Shakujii Kōen to Nerima Takanodai.
It appears the inside inbound track immediately east of Shakujii Kōen isn’t going to be used for a while, as there is no overhead strung for it and there is a buffer stop at the base of the ramp, where it connects with the existing aerial structure to Nerima Takanodai.

quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 3rd, 2011, 10:56 AM   #2489
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

Seibu Ikebukuro Line grade-separation construction updates: Part 2

Next, some shots at the new elevated outbound platform.
Source: http://okiraku-goraku.com/

West end of the platform. Only the inside track is in service, and the other half of the island platform, together with the fourth track, is still under construction. Assuming the columns supporting the canopy are approximately down the centerline of the platform, it appears that the platform will be fairly wide once complete, even at the ends.



Moving towards the middle section of the platform, we come across the first set of new escalators. These are double-width, one in each direction. We can see they’ve only opened exactly as much of the platform as needed—the walls of the escalator well are up against the white panels separating the remaining sections to be constructed.



Waiting room is located in between the escalator and elevator.



New elevator



New stairwell



Eastern end of the platform. Since the panels are set back quite a bit here from the canopy columns, it seems they’ve been able to complete more of the aerial structure at this particular location than at others.



Middle section of the platform. One of the better looking new stations from platform level, perhaps a bit reminiscent of the recently-elevated Chūō Rapid Line stations.

quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 3rd, 2011, 10:56 AM   #2490
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

Seibu Ikebukuro Line grade-separation construction updates: Part 3

Next, the concourse of the station.
Source: http://okiraku-goraku.com/

Posted notice about changes to the concourse area as part of the elevation of the outbound track. Before the elevation of the track, there were two separate faregate entrances, one for the elevated inbound track and another for the ground-level outbound track. The previous public passage connecting both sides of the station is on the left, in gray, but has now been replaced with the substantially larger concourse area in yellow, allowing a new, single faregate location to be shared with the inbound platform.



North side (inbound platform side) of the concourse area.
The opening connecting to the passage to the former ground-level outbound platform has been boarded up (here, in brown). This is just temporary for now, and they’ll likely come back to fully complete this particular section of wall and get it to match the rest of the station interior.



Opposite of the faregates, more panels sectioning off temporary parts of the station.



Escalators for the outbound platform



Elevator for the inbound platform. The door opens in opposite locations between the platform and concourse levels, making it easy to use for strollers, wheelchairs, etc. Currently, the elevator door faces away from the single faregate entrance, but that may be because they have yet to build the second faregate entrance for the station where the previous public passage was.



Stairwell for the outbound platform



LED departure boards are three rows each (two trains showing per direction). Perhaps they could’ve done with four rows each (three trains per direction) given the complexity of services as well as the through-servicing onto the Yūrakuchō Line and Fukutoshin Line.

Platform 2 for Tokorozawa, Hannō, and Seibu Chichibu:
12:42 Local for Hōya
12:46 Local for Seibu Kyūjō-mae

Platforms 3 / 4 for Nerima, Ikebukuro, Shin-Kiba, and Shibuya
12:40 Local for Shin-KIba
12:45 Semi-express for Ikebukuro

There’s a small sticker on where the “Platform 1” would be since it’s not even built yet.

quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 3rd, 2011, 10:57 AM   #2491
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

Seibu Ikebukuro Line grade-separation construction updates: Part 4

Continuing with the concourse area, but outside the faregates.
Source: http://okiraku-goraku.com/

New public passage outside the faregates. Typical faregate design for larger stations now includes these staffed information counters adjacent to the faregates. The far-side of the faregates is the side closer to the outbound track, and is still partially covered in panels as they are likely still working on this part and may have restricted space due to the ground-level outbound platform.



TVMs.
Perhaps a little small, but given this is mostly a station for locals, many of whom will have IC cards, then it may not be such a problem.



Public passage. The parts directly underneath the aerial structure are pretty much complete, with just some parts outside of this that still need work.



North Exit of the station, near the old faregate location which they will now remove after having opened the single centralized array.



At the South Exit. Previously, passengers walked down and to the left to access the underground public passage beneath the tracks, but with the opening of the new concourse area and public passage, they make a right at the corner instead. Perhaps similar distance-wise, but without the need to go up or down. Since this opens right onto the ground-level outbound track, they’ve still got a lot of work to spruce this area up.



Former one-track-wide grade crossing is now closed, for good.



From the frontage road alongside the ground-level track, we get a good view of the progress on the aerial structure. Not much room behind those white panels on the new outbound platform...



The other grade crossing on the west side of the station, also closed permanently.

quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 3rd, 2011, 10:58 AM   #2492
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

Seibu Ikebukuro Line grade-separation construction updates: Part 5

Moving over to Hōya Station…
First, some videos. Again, not great quality, but a good way to overview recent progress.
Source: okirakugoraku on YouTube

Outbound train leaving Hōya Station:



Inbound train approaching Hōya Station:



To summarize, the trackwork for the new center track at the station itself is complete, but there is no overhead / catenary installed yet. Immediately west of the station, it appears that they have completed shifting the southern of the two sidings in the middle closer to the station, but still need to tweak the northern siding a bit to make it usable. There may also be work yet to come on the tracks to / from the yard just west of the station.

Photos at the station:
Source: http://okiraku-goraku.com/

Tiling and other finishes on the half of the island platform serving the new center track is now complete. The whole platform is now open, although there are currently no trains serving the track since it’s not yet electrified.



Middle section of the new platform. The tactile installations leading from the elevator to the new platform are complete, but are currently covered up to prevent confusion.



West end of the new platform



Center track.
The new tracks are ballasted ladder track.



Looking at the east end, closer to Ikebukuro. The center track is scheduled to enter service in July.

quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 3rd, 2011, 10:59 AM   #2493
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

Seibu Ikebukuro Line grade-separation construction updates: Part 6

Last is Shiinamachi and Ekoda Stations.
Source: http://okiraku-goraku.com/

Posted notice on the improvements at Shiinamachi Station. In addition to the typical items (new elevated concourse, new public passage, and station facility renovation), this particular project also includes extension of the platforms to service 10-car trains.



Zoom-in of the station area



West end of the platforms



Elevated station concourse under construction.



East end of Shiinamachi Station. Doesn’t seem to be much movement here.



Moving to Ekoda Station, where the work on station improvements and platform extension is complete.



Completed South Exit, although the staging area here has yet to be finished.

quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 4th, 2011, 10:23 AM   #2494
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

Kawasaki to invest another $25 million in Yonkers railcar plant
http://www.lohud.com/article/2011042...ll|text|News|s

Quote:
ALBANY — Kawasaki Rail Car Inc. will invest $25 million into its Yonkers facility and retain 375 jobs, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Thursday.

Kawasaki has operated its U.S. corporate headquarters and manufacturing facility in the Hudson Valley since 1985. The company started in the region with the order of 95 subway cars for the Port Authority Trans-Hudson system between New York and New Jersey.

"Kawasaki's decision to reinvest in Yonkers speaks volumes about New York's commitment to business," Cuomo said in a statement. "It means that hundreds of good jobs will stay right here in New York. We look forward to the company's continued growth and prosperity in the Lower Hudson Valley."

Empire State Development Corp., the state's economic development arm, has awarded Kawasaki a $500,000 grant to retain the jobs. The company is investing $25 million for the purchase and renovation of its leased facility in Yonkers, state officials said.

"Today's announcement symbolizes the commitment of a world-renowned and well-respected manufacturer to the State of New York," said Kenneth Adams, head of Empire State Development Corp. "It also reinforces Gov. Cuomo's message that New York is open for business. We are thrilled that Kawasaki will continue to call New York home."

Yonkers Mayor Phil Amicone also praised the announcement.

"Kawasaki has been an important member of our corporate community in Yonkers for decades," he said, "and we are thrilled they will be staying here for years to come."

Kawasaki gets an average of $460 million a year in regional contracts and produces an average of 180 rail cars a year for various transportation authorities in the tri-state region.

In 2009, Kawasaki Rail Car Inc. began seeking a permanent base for U.S. operations but stuck with Yonkers after considering sites in Nebraska and Newark, N.J.

The initial agreement in the 1980s required the company to be near the transit service area, but state officials said that requirement no longer existed and Newark would have still been in the service area even if it had.

The company already has a rail car manufacturing facility in Lincoln, Neb., but the Hudson Valley is home to the nation's busiest passenger rail corridor, state officials said.

"We are very happy to stay in our New York home," said Hiroji Iwasaki, the chief executive officer of Kawasaki Rail Car Inc. "We had considered locations outside New York state for this, but based upon the tremendous quality of our workforce here as well as the help provided by Empire State Development, the decision was an easy one to make."

The Kawasaki Rail Car plant in Yonkers. / File photo by Matthew Brown/The Journal News
BART (San Francisco) is also looking into large-scale fleet replacement, so perhaps we could see them doubling up on the WMATA order given how similar their train designs are…
quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 4th, 2011, 10:24 AM   #2495
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries teams with New Flyer on all-electric bus project
http://www.mhi.co.jp/en/news/story/1104271424.html

Quote:
Tokyo, April 27, 2011 - On April 26 Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI), the government of Canada's Manitoba Province, two local companies and a Canadian college announced that the parties will jointly develop and test an all-electric transit bus to feature advanced battery and charging technologies. This project is the first development to come out of the memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed last December between MHI and the Manitoba government on a collaborative framework to contribute toward realizing an advanced low-carbon society.



The parties who will participate at this project are the Government of Manitoba, MHI, the Manitoba Hydro, Red River College, and New Flyer Industries Canada ULC, a Canadian manufacturer of heavy-duty transit buses. As at last year's MOU signing, this announcement of the project was held at Red River College in Winnipeg, the provincial capital, attended by Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger, MHI Director Ichiro Fukue and the top managements of other project members.

For the three-year C$3 million project, which is targeted at developing and testing in cold weather an all- electric transit bus, it also looks to use the demonstration as a showcase for other potential markets within North America.

MHI will be responsible for the lithium-ion secondary battery packs for this prototype demonstration bus.

New Flyer Industries Canada ULC is an affiliate of New Flyer Industries, Inc., a leading manufacturer of heavy - duty transit buses in North America. Both companies have their head offices in Winnipeg. Manitoba Hydro is Manitoba’s major energy utility, generating, transmitting and distributing electricity throughout the province. Red River College is a public educational institution with more than 30,000 students at campuses in Winnipeg and throughout Manitoba. Electric and hybrid vehicle applied research, development and education is a focus area for the College.

MHI positions energy and environment-related business as one of its areas of focus for the 21st century, and the company has been participating in many environment-related projects of governments and municipalities both in Japan and abroad. Gaining momentum from the latest collaborative project agreement, going forward MHI will continue to aggressively propose innovative solutions for energy and environmental issues worldwide, leveraging its expansive range of technologies and knowhow in these fields.
Official press release on this particular news item.
quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 4th, 2011, 10:26 AM   #2496
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

Suminoe Textile and Gifu Plastic develop new TECCELL material for railcar design
http://online.ibnewsnet.com/news/fil...110501-02.html

Quote:
Suminoe Textile Co., Ltd., together with Gifu Plastic Industry Co., Ltd. (HQ: Gifu City, Gifu Prefecture; President: Ōmatsu Toshiyuki), a comprehensive manufacturer of plastic products, has developed a revolutionary resin-based honeycomb-structured material that has been certified fire-resistant under railcar material flammability tests.

The honeycomb material realizes high-strength and lightweight design, and is gathering attention in a multitude of industrial fields including automobiles, railcars, goods distribution, and home construction. Gifu Plastic has made its presence known within the market for honeycomb materials, developing its TECCELL honeycomb-structure material composed of polypropylene resin, allowing for lightweight three-dimensional structures one-seventh the weight of steel and one-third the weight of aluminum. In this latest development effort, TECCELL now incorporates fire-resistant properties. Improving the fire resistance of polypropylene resin was believed to be difficult due to changes in its material properties, but with Suminoe Textile’s expertise in fire-resistance design accumulated through the development of materials for railway rolling stock, the development effort was a success. This is the first time in the industry that a resin-based honeycomb material has been certified as fire-resistant, and both companies are currently jointly in the process of applying for patents for the product.

With this latest certification as a fire-resistant product, the applicability of TECCELL has expanded. In addition to expanding marketing of the product in fields where fire resistance is necessary—such as transport equipment (e.g., railways, buses)—we will also promote product development for the construction-related market.

The product is slated to enter the market in September 2011. The public debut will be held at Gifu Plastic Industry’s booth at the NPLAS/MALSEC Lightweight and High-Strength Design Exhibition 2011 materials and technology exhibition to be held at Tōkyō Big Sight from Wednesday, May 18 to Friday, May 20.

Honeycomb material TECCELL


The material can also be shaped into three-dimensional forms.
An interesting material that sounds like it could have wide potential applicability in transit vehicle design… Much of Japan’s rolling stock design efforts these days are geared towards making trains more and more lightweight.
quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 4th, 2011, 10:26 AM   #2497
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

Near field communication transforms travel in Japan
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-13216267

Quote:
Mobile phones in Japan have been equipped with near field communication [NFC] technology for several years now.


Ama Chan is aiming her mobile at small, square, printed, barcode tattoo that resembles a splattered space invader.

You will find their like plastered all over Japan. This one is printed on a Tokyo bus stop, so she clicks the camera shutter and peers happily at the result.

Her prize? A timetable appears instantly on the phone's screen, plus the estimated arrival time of the next bus.

When the oddly retro-style bus arrives, she uses her phone to pay by swiping at the front as a Londoner might flutter an Oyster smartcard on entering the Tube.

Ahead of the curve
This is travel Tokyo-style.

And although these types of convenient dodges are slowly appearing in the West (those information-laden barcode tattoos are known as QR codes in the UK, and e-wallets are appearing on phones outside Japan), the country has been experimenting with such technology for more than five years now, and more advanced travel guiding tech besides.

So where better to examine the props that will dominate all our traveller and travel industry tomorrows?

Granted, an Anglo-Saxon smartphone, an iPhone, a Google phone and their ilk can be handy on the road but they lack, so far, many of the tools so useful to travellers in Japan on their so-called feature phones.

With the right clam-shell, iridescent "keitai", subscribers get a seriously high-resolution camera, a projector, and the all-important radio chip that works as a train/air/entrance ticket/boarding pass.

This radio tag can also check you into hotels and even open the room's door for you.

They also act as e-wallets. With up to 50,000 yen credit siphoned into the phone, customers use it to buy groceries at convenience stores, pay the taxi driver and persuade Japan's ubiquitous vending machines to cough up.

Flights of fancy
Japan's leading airline, All Nippon Airways (ANA), has been using such e-wallets to compete with the country's formidably fast trains for more than five years.

Japanese mobile phone - keitai - with NFC chip


"The major drawback of flying compared to train travel is, of course, the time spent at the airport," says ANA spokesman Ryosei Nomura.

"With ANA's all-in-one ticket and boarding pass in your phone, you can arrive and board your plane within 15 minutes."

Dubbed SKiP, the service relies on Osaifu-Keitai (literally "wallet mobile") technology developed by comms giant NTT.

ANA passengers using their phone as a ticket can be on the plane within 15 minutes.


As the NFC [near field communication] chip-based tech relies on dedicated readers which are available only in a few other countries besides Japan, the service so far applies just to domestic flights.

Users could even conceivably buy their air ticket using their phone at a convenience store with such readers.

The system has a number of advantages over plastic smart cards, too, such as being able to automatically recharge credit via the internet, says Mr Nomura.

With GPS in mobiles as standard, years ahead of the UK, the keitai has also evolved into a seriously useful navigation tool here.

Something called the Total Navigation site does exactly what it says on the tin, using 3D-rendered info on your screen. Hold it in your grip and the phone vibrates telling you when to turn.

Just as well: you need all the hand-holding you can get in the vastness of a capital without street names like Tokyo.

Deciphering menus
Tech also comes to the aid of the linguistically challenged.

Despite the cosmopolitan nature of Tokyo, menus are invariably in Japanese. So to have a phone that snaps a potential meal and describes in English what it is - mock-up meals are only sometimes displayed in the window - is obviously a godsend.

With some restaurant businesses this is catching on, as Japan looks to foreign tourists for badly needed revenue.

Other applications allow you to bring up menus, reviews and translations by other users just by focusing your mobile's camera at the restaurant itself.

Visitors to Japan can try out some of these services by renting domestic phones at the airports. Unfortunately, not all such resources are available on the airport pick-up phones.

But your correspondent was able to attempt a cashless journey from Tokyo through Kyoto to Fukuoka in the south starting with Ana's SKiP service for flights. No maps, no guides, just the omnipotent keitai.

The all-in-one nature of the mobile makes this possible, as does Japan's bent for convenience.

'Swiss army knife'

Such cramped, intensely urban, highly stressful lifestyles have made the Japanese super-reliant on, and worshipful, of convenience, says Ama Chan.

Keitai are the totems of that reverence and have become touchstones for survival. The keitai rules.

Public mobile-phone charging point on a Kyoto street.


Travellers of the near future may want to emulate the light-footed Japanese, shearing off excess baggage such as guidebooks, laptops, camera - even books - and depending solely on the Swiss army knife of the road warrior - the keitai.

In Kyoto, the Hyatt Regency has started the ball rolling with an iPhone rental service that knows where guests are and beams text, video and graphics to inform, help and guide them.

"Of course many overseas visitors bring their smartphones with them, but most don't have a data plan that makes it economic sense to use their phone for downloads," says the hotel's manager Ken Yokoyama.

"The next step was to augment the service with tips from the concierge.

"After that we would like to develop a phone-based service that will think and act like a concierge, to give simple advice - where to eat, for example. The next step after that will be to totally personalise that service."

Mr Yokoyama envisages a massive database covering all Kyoto'a concierge knowledge melding into one serious, well-informed, location-specific travel application laid within the compass of the traveller's hand.

Real-world view

Augmenting city guides will not stop there. Something called "augmented reality" (AR) is already evolving into a valuable tool for travellers.

Augmented reality app Sekai Camera lets users hang "tags" that can be seen through an iPhone.


Like the iPhone, such AR apps know where users are, and beam location relevant info to their phones. This is viewed superimposed on the camera viewfinder on the mobile's screen.

London already has Tube help in this form, while others such as Layar can perform the neat trick with restaurants, mentioned earlier.

Japan's version of this application, Sekai (World) camera, works the same magic, but adds tagging and social networking.

Like other AR apps it calculates your position, then using the camera, displays location-specific information graphically on top of your real-world view.

But the genius of Sekai Camera is that individuals and businesses can add their own information. They just point a smartphone camera at the landscape, adding "tags" that can include text, images, and sound that can be picked up by others in the area later.

Tags can translate into coupons from businesses (a free Guinness when you stop at a bar serving the black stuff, for example) or travel tips from friends.

Such apps are not just confined to Japan. They are available now at a smartphone near you.

But Japan still holds the lead with applications of tech for travel.

Overnight stay

The county's hotel industry is also benefiting from a dash of hi-tech gloss. Check into the entirely swish 9h (nine hours) capsule hotel in Kyoto and you might experience the teched-up future of budget hotels.

Guests at the 9h capsule hotel in Kyoto can relax in super hi-tech 'pods'.


Ultra-futuristic, the Kubrick-inspired pods go for about 4000 yen a night via their website.

Kyoto might be rich in heritage but this doesn't stop it over-dosing like the rest of urban Japan on hi-tech treats. For evidence, visitors might want to check out the phone chargers available in even the most venerable temples.

The futuristic travel experience that 9h offers (perhaps a model for a Mars trip accommodation?) includes a pod, not a bedroom, with a "Sleep Ambient Control System", that "lulls to a comfortable sleep". The same system awakens guests with light, not an alarm clock.

Spartan, functional, but fun for a night.

For sci-fi visions of how we might travel smarter in the future Japan obviously has plenty to show us. But the West is catching up fast.

Smartphones such as the iPhone and their apps are changing the way we travel, and how the travel industry attracts and aids such tourists.

Where most, outside of Japan, are still adjusting to life seen through the prism of the mobile, in Japan it is now second nature.

These early adopters are worth watching just to see how the tech will usher in new services for getting about and how to capitalise on our new-found travel touchstone - the mobile.
A bit of a big-picture article, but I thought it was interesting… The technology behind most of these efforts is FeliCa, the same system behind Japan’s transport farecards (Suica, PASMO, ICOCA, PiTaPa, etc.).
quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 4th, 2011, 10:27 AM   #2498
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

SUGOCA electronic money expands to Okinawa
http://www.okinawatimes.co.jp/article/2011-04-23_16944/

Quote:
Starting April 26, JR Kyūshū will introduce reader units allowing payment through and recharging of transport-based electronic money issued by JR Group companies, including SUGOCA and Suica at 141 Lawson stores in Okinawa Prefecture. JR Kyūshū managing director Watanabe Seiichirō revealed the news on April 22. Six types of transport-based electronic money systems in use outside of Okinawa can now be used interchangeably in Okinawa, and if the introduction catches on, shopping and transport access is likely to become more convenient for tourists.

As many of Okinawa’s tourists are visiting from the Greater Tōkyō, Kansai, and Kyūshū areas, where transport-based electronic money is commonplace, the railway forecasted a sufficient level of demand for the service and moved forward with the rollout. The railway is also looking at introducing the system for Ryūkyū JUSCO, Okinawa Family Mart, and Daiichi Kōtsū Sangyō. In the future, the railway is considering introducing the service to tourist facilities, restaurants, the monorail, and buses in Okinawa Prefecture.

As part of the program, SUGOCA electronic money reader units will be installed. The readers will accept not only SUGOCA, but also SUICA (JR East), TOICA (JR Central), ICOCA (JR West), nimoca (Nishi-Nippon Railroad), and Hayakaken (Fukuoka City Transportation Bureau) cards. In 2013, Kitaca (JR Hokkaidō) and PASMO (Kantō area private railways) are also slated to be added.

Transport-based electronic money can be used not only at convenience stores and fashion shops, but also on public transit such as trains and buses, and usage is expanding. Approx. 34 percent of the electronic money market is captured by payments using transport-based electronic money.

Managing director Watanabe emphasized the merits to Okinawa tourism: “Frequency of usage is overwhelmingly high, and the service is also popular among students on school trips.”

quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 4th, 2011, 10:27 AM   #2499
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

Sneak peek at the new Midōsuji Line 30000 series

A few (small) snaps at the Kinki Sharyō factory:
Source: http://westjapan2.seesaa.net/







quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old May 4th, 2011, 10:28 AM   #2500
quashlo
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 14,835
Likes (Received): 3215

Niigata City committee recommends BRT
http://mainichi.jp/area/niigata/news...10092000c.html

Quote:
The final session of a Niigata City investigative committee (Chairman: Yokohama National University graduate school professor Nakamura Fumihiko) evaluating introduction of a “new transit” system into central Niigata City was recently held, with committee members agreeing on a proposal to operate a bus rapid transit (BRT) system on exclusive bus lanes with low-floor buses. As soon as mid-May, the committee will report its findings to Niigata City mayor Shinoda Akira.

As the BRT would run in exclusive lanes, a similar on-time performance to railways can be achieved. Masaya-kōji runs through central Niigata City, with three lanes in each direction, and the proposal envisions converting the third and rightmost lanes to exclusive bus lanes.

The first phase encompasses approx. 10 km from Hakusan Station to southern Toyanogata via the Furumachi District and JR Niigata Station, connecting Niigata City Hall and Niigata City General Hospital. The capital investment is estimated at ¥7 billion, and the line is expected to be financially feasible if it can secure daily ridership of approx. 5,000 passengers. In particular, the proposal identifies the City Hall – Furumachi – Niigata Station section as the highest-priority section.

Since it will be possible to convert the line to light rail transit (LRT) by simply laying down tracks in the bus lanes, the proposal also says that a future transition to LRT should be considered in terms of preparation for increased passenger demand.
Some pics:
Source: Niigata City

Possible routes under consideration. The priority route is Route A in red.



Three technologies were considered:
BRT



LRT



Monorail

quashlo no está en línea   Reply With Quote


Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Related topics on SkyscraperCity


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 12:46 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Feedback Buttons provided by Advanced Post Thanks / Like (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2018 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2018 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

SkyscraperCity ☆ In Urbanity We trust ☆ about us | privacy policy | DMCA policy

tech management by Sysprosium