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Old May 21st, 2011, 04:19 AM   #2561
quashlo
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Tōkyū Musashi Kosugi Station construction update

Pictures from a while back (2011.02) of the platform extension work at Tōkyū Musashi Kosugi Station.
Source: http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/helicopter/

The flurry of construction outside Musashi Kosugi Station. In addition to this platform extension work in preparation for the Tōkyū Tōyoko Line service with the Tōkyō Metro Fukutoshin Line, there is also a new station tenant building at the Tōkyū station to be built, plus the work on the JR Nambu Line–Yokosuka Line transfer corridor. Musashi Kosugi is developing quite nicely as one of Tōkyō’s newer skylines.



North end of the inbound platform (for Shibuya). The north end of the station consists of an overpass above the JR Nambu Line platforms at Musashi Kosugi, and the platform extension involved “filling in” the gaps.



Facing the outbound platform (for Yokohama and Motomachi–Chūkagai). Eventually the beams forming the overpass will be covered up by the extended platform.



Extension of the outbound platform



These columns were designed beforehand with enough girth to support the future Tōkyū station tenant building. Work is slated to begin in June and continue until the end of next year.

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Old May 21st, 2011, 04:20 AM   #2562
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Station area aerials: Part 4

A continuation of the series on aerial shots of station areas.

The previous posts in this series:
Part 1: http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showpo...postcount=1785
Part 2: http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showpo...postcount=1786
Part 3: http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showpo...postcount=1787

Tsudanuma Station (Narashino City, Chiba Prefecture)
JR Sōbu Rapid Line, JR Sōbu Local Line
101,870 daily exits (2009)

A major station on the JR Sōbu Main Line. The south side of the station is home to the Tsudanuma Campus of the Chiba Institute of Technology. A new 20-story tower (right) opened in 2011.03, the second part of the campus expansion. The first part is the first tower (left) that opened in 2008.08.


Source: Original image from http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/helicopter/

Massive new town redevelopment on the south side of the station, Kanade no Mori (“Forest of Music”). Planned population is 7,000 residents. Building plan includes four residential towers (20-story, 24-story, 20-story, and 17-story) containing 721 units, plus smaller homes. Completion is slated for FY2014. The land readjustment project cost is about ¥15 billion and involved approx. 250 landowners, some of whom are farmers who will get a piece of communal farm plots inside the new town to continue their farming.


Source: Original image from http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/helicopter/

Moto-Yawata Station. Keisei Yawata Station (Ichikawa City, Chiba Prefecture)
JR Sōbu Local Line, Toei Subway Shinjuku Line, Keisei Main Line
JR: 58,066 daily entries (2009)
Toei Subway: 68,220 daily entries and exits (2009)
Keisei: 32,074 daily entries and exits (2009)

The only Toei Subway station outside of the prefectural limits of Tōkyō, serving the center of Ichikawa City at the conflux of three separate lines operated by three separate companies. There’s another redevelopment project here set to break ground that includes a 40-story residential tower (465 units).


Source: Original image from http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/helicopter/

Minato Mirai Station (Nishi Ward, Yokohama City, Kanagawa Prefecture)
Yokohama Rapid Railway Minato Mirai Line
55,829 daily entries and exits (2008)

Minato Mirai is a waterfront redevelopment zone in Yokohama City, and the Minato Mirai Line was built expressly to serve this new area. It includes the current tallest building in Japan, the Yokohama Landmark Tower, and development is still underway, with the latest addition being Nissan’s Global HQ (actually closer to Shin-Takashima Station than Minato Mirai Station).


Source: Original image from http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/helicopter/


Source: Original image from http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/helicopter/

Tsurumi Station / Keikyū Tsurumi Station (Tsurumi Ward, Yokohama City, Kanagawa Prefecture)
JR Keihin-Tōhoku Line, JR Tsurumi Line, Keikyū Main Line
JR: 76,850 daily entries (2009)
Keikyū: 28,457 daily entries and exits (2008)

The heart of Tsurumi Ward on the busy Keihin (Tōkyō – Yokohama corridor) where JR and Keikyū compete for passengers just steps away from each other. A mixed-use redevelopment project (SeaCrane) was recently completed between the two stations and includes a 31-story residential tower (301 units), a midrise commercial / public facility building, and a Hotel Mets (JR East-operated hotel).


Source: Original image from http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/helicopter/
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Old May 21st, 2011, 04:24 AM   #2563
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Station area aerials: Part 5

Nakano Station (Nakano Ward, Tōkyō)
JR Chūō Rapid Line, JR Chūō Local Line, Tōkyō Metro Tōzai Line
JR: 124,494 daily entries (2009)
Tōkyō Metro: 132,742 daily entries and exits (2009)

A built-out neighborhood smack dab on the Chūō Line in Tōkyō’s western wards. Another redevelopment project is underway here, just south of the station—a 29-story condo tower (234 units). There are other redevelopment projects underway for other lots surrounding the station.


Source: Original image from http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/helicopter/

Shibuya Station (Shibuya Ward, Tōkyō)
JR Yamanote Line, JR Saikyō Line, JR Shōnan-Shinjuku Line, Tōkyō Metro Ginza Line, Tōkyō Metro Hanzōmon Line, Tōkyō Metro Fukutoshin Line, Tōkyū Den’en Toshi Line, Tōkyū Tōyoko Line, Keiō Inokashira Line
JR: 412,241 daily entries (2009)
Tōkyū: 1,079,319 daily entries and exits (2009) (highest for any single private railway station in Japan)
Tōkyō Metro: 801,222 daily entries and exits (2009)
Keiō: 340,627 daily entries and exits

One of Tōkyō’s major terminals and the second busiest station by passengers in Japan.
Tōkyū’s Shibuya Hikarie’s redevelopment project is underway and should open soon, together with the start of through-services between the Tōyoko Line and Fukutoshin Line. There are subsequent plans for major reorganization of the station facilities, including shifting over the Ginza Line and Saikyō Line / Shōnan-Shinjuku Line tracks and construction of a station tenant building, perhaps a tower development.


Source: Original image from http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/helicopter/

Tamachi Car Center (Minato Ward, Tōkyō)

There are plans to redevelop parts of Tamachi Car Center after the opening of the Tōhoku Through Line, allowing for through-services between the Utsunomiya Line / Takasaki Line / Jōban Line and the Tōkaidō Line and consolidation of maintenance / storage facilities among the various lines. Also interesting to note is the Tōkaidō Freight Line, on which there are proposals to run passenger trains. Lots of development potential for JR East on the site of the car center itself, and there have been rumors of a new station on the Yamanote Line here.


Source: Original image from http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/helicopter/

Kita-Yono Station (Chūō Ward, Saitama City, Saitama Prefecture)
JR Saikyō Line
8,143 daily entries (2009)

Another residential redevelopment underway (includes a 32-story tower, 419 units total) in the northern suburbs of Tōkyō near Saitama Shin-Toshin on the infamously-crowded Saikyō Line.


Source: Original image from http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/helicopter/
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Old May 21st, 2011, 04:26 AM   #2564
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Ueno Juri is new mascot character for Keiō Electric Railway (redux)

Second CM finally made it to YouTube… Hopefully they don’t take it down.
First one is here: http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showpo...postcount=3150.


Source: futarichan on YouTube

This CM series was specially tailored for Ueno Juri, as the slogan “Ki no Sato e” (“To the forest village”) uses the same characters as her first name, Juri (樹里).
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Old May 22nd, 2011, 08:35 AM   #2565
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Ōsaka Municipal Transportation Bureau runs simulations of reduced schedule
http://www.mbs.jp/news/kansaiflash_G...00457679.shtml

Quote:
Amidst projections of an electricity shortage this summer as a result of the accident at Tōkyō Electric Power Company’s (TEPCO) Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant and the shutdown of Chūbu Electric Power Company’s Hamaoka nuclear power plant, the Ōsaka Municipal Transportation Bureau has begun simulations of reduced train services in the event that it receives a request to conserve electricity from the national government or other officials. The Transportation Bureau drafted an operating plan for the nine lines of the Municipal Subway necessary to achieve a 10 to 20 percent reduction in electricity consumption. Transportation Bureau spokespersons say, “This is preparation just in case we are forced to deal with a situation like rolling blackouts,” and that it’s uncertain at this time whether the plan will be implemented.

The analysis was conducted for two scenarios: one looking just at the Midōsuji Line, which carries approx. 1.2 million riders daily, and another looking at all nine lines including the Midōsuji Line and New Tram. The Transportation Bureau drafted operating plans necessary to reduce electricity consumption during the peak load period—the morning rush hour (7:00 to 9:00 am)—by 10 to 20 percent.

As a result, the Transportation Bureau says it can reduce electricity consumption on the Midōsuji Line by 10 percent by changing the morning rush hour schedule to the evening rush hour schedule, which operates less trains. A 20 percent reduction can be achieved by switching to a weekend schedule. Crowding, which normally reaches about 140% of capacity during a normal schedule, would reach 170% with an evening rush hour schedule and 200% with a weekend schedule.

In addition, the Transportation Bureau also says it can achieve at 20% reduction across all lines with two different alternatives: (1) Operating the Midōsuji Line on a regular schedule and the remaining eight lines on a weekend schedule; or (2) Operating the Midōsuji Line on an evening rush hour schedule, the Chūō Line on a regular schedule, and other lines on a weekend schedule.

Transportation Bureau spokespersons say, “We conducted the analysis for the morning rush hour, when the effects would be most severe. Even assuming that reduced train service is necessary, it’s likely we would actually make changes during the midday period, when electricity demand is highest.”
Video news reports:
ANN: http://news.tv-asahi.co.jp/ann/news/...210519012.html
MBS: http://www.mbs.jp/news/kansaiflash_G...00457790.shtml

Midōsuji Line @ Umeda Station, Platform 2 (for Shin-Ōsaka and Senri Chūō) during the morning rush hour (2010.06):


Source: INCJapan on YouTube
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Old May 22nd, 2011, 08:36 AM   #2566
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Tōkyō-area railways prepare for summer electricity shortage
http://www.nikkei.com/news/special/s...E2E3E3E0E4EAEA

Quote:
In an effort to meet the 15-percent cut in electricity usage the government is asking of firms within Tōkyō Electric Power Company’s (TEPCO) service area, private railway and subway companies in the Greater Tōkyō region have developed a new series of electricity conservation measures. Tōkyū Corporation is considering beginning train services earlier, while Keiō Corporation is looking into increasing the temperature setting inside all of its trains. East Japan Railway Company (JR East), which has its own large-scale power plants, will continue running fewer trains during the midday periods in an effort to provide enough electrical power to TEPCO.

Tōkyū Corporation is considering moving forward its first train services, normally beginning during the 5:00 am hour, to the 4:00 am hour. The effort is targeted at urging passengers to use early-morning trains, allowing the railway to reduce services during the midday period when the load on the power grid reaches a peak.

Since starting train services earlier means that the track maintenance work normally performed late at night will have to end earlier, the railway is also considering moving the last trains, normally leaving during the 12:00 hour, to an earlier schedule. Tōkyū is also looking into modifying the service hours for buses linking train stations and residential neighborhoods.

Some companies in the National Capital Region are considering beginning work earlier in an effort to conserve electricity, and Tōkyū will support these efforts by starting train services earlier.

Keiō Corporation plans to increase the temperature inside all of its cars from the current 26 degrees to the 28 degrees already used in its special “light-AC” cars. The railway has begun investigating just how much electricity can be conserved by raising the temperature setting. Other railway companies including Tōbu Railway are considering increasing the temperature inside trains.

By July, the Yokohama Municipal Subway will replace the fluorescent lights at Shin-Yokohama Station and eight other major stations, constantly lit up, with more energy-efficient light-emitting diode (LED) units. The railway will complete replacement of lighting at all stations by FY2013.

JR East to sell electrical power
Even now, private railway and subway companies are implementing electricity conservation strategies, including dimming station lighting and stopping escalators. But as consumption of electricity for air conditioning will increase in July and August, it will be difficult to meet the goal of a 15% reduction in consumption using the current conservation strategies. The increase in AC temperature settings inside trains is expected to result in complaints from passengers, but railway companies say they hope to work to get passengers to understand the situation.

Meanwhile, JR East, which has its own combustion and hydroelectric power plants, will run its plants at full output, providing electricity to run its trains in the Greater Tōkyō area. The excess electricity will be sold to TEPCO in a cooperative effort to secure enough capacity in the power grid.

Large-consumer electricity demand in the TEPCO service area by industry
Research conducted by Agency for Natural Resources and Energy in February
Mechanical equipment and devices: 22.7%
Chemical industry: 11.7%
Steel industry: 9.7%
Railway industry: 7.5%
Food products: 6.4%
Non-ferrous metals: 5.3%
Other: 36.7%

“Light-AC” cars (弱冷房車 jaku-reibōsha) are just another of the peculiarities of Japanese railway systems—basically, passengers who think the regular AC temperature setting inside trains is too cold can board specially-marked “light-AC” cars (these are usually marked with big fat stickers above the doors) where the interior temperature is set slightly warmer.


Source: http://kotoripiyopiyo.com/

Apparently, with the accident Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant and Chūbu Electric Power Company’s decision to shutdown the Hamaoka nuclear power plant, the electricity-conservation movement is expanding nationwide, and some railways in the Kansai area have announced the possibility of conservation strategies this summer.

JR West is considering turning off lighting inside trains and stations primarily during the midday, but has said it will not reduce train services. Kintetsu is also looking at systemwide measures such as turning off lights and TVMs. Hankyū Corporation, Hanshin Electric Railway, Nankai Electric Railway, and Keihan Electric Railway all say they are currently not considering any special measures to conserve electricity, but all four plus Kintetsu have extended the use of the summer uniforms for their railway staff (normally June to September) to mid-May and October. With the shutdown of Reactors 2 and 3 at Kyūshū Electric Power Company’s Genkai nuclear power plant for regular maintenance and no date set for their restart, JR Kyūshū and Nishitetsu have also begun considering reduced train schedules.
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Old May 22nd, 2011, 08:37 AM   #2567
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WiMAX wireless broadband to be rolled out onto Tōkyō Metro and Toei Subway tunnels next March
http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-b...0110521a8.html

Quote:
Tokyo subways will start offering the high-speed WiMax wireless service around next March, allowing commuters to exchange text messages and surf the Interenet in moving trains.

The two subway operators in the metropolitan area *- the Tokyo Metropolitan Government and the private Tokyo Metro Co.—said they will cooperate with the broadband service firm UQ Communications Inc., to install the equipment throughout their entire subway networks.

UQ Communications will foot the bill for installing the WiMAX system, formally known as Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access. Currently, cellphone networks are accessible only in the stations.
More news on the efforts to bring wireless service onto tunnel sections of the subway. Ironically enough, UQ Communications is a major recipient of JR East investment. The railway owns 17.65% of the shares in the telecommunications firm, and has been upgrading a lot of its communications systems (including the “train channel” content displayed on the LCD screens inside trains and digital advertisements inside JR East convenience stores) to UQ’s WiMAX (wireless broadband) products. In a bit of self-promotion, there are UQ WiMAX commercials running inside trains and on ads inside JR East stations.

A couple pictures from the UQ WiMAX booth at CEATAC JAPAN 2010:
Source: http://gigazine.net/

Mockup of the double-screen LCD units on JR East’s E259 series Narita Express trains. The content for these displays is updated constantly (there is a need to provide realtime info such as weather, flight departures, news, and advertisements on the Narita Express service) using UQ WiMAX.



One of the WiMAX repeaters installed on trains, used to stabilize the signal between passengers’ WiMAX devices and the WiMAX base stations located along the train line.

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Old May 22nd, 2011, 08:38 AM   #2568
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Six-door cars on the Yamanote Line

Shots at Meguro and Ebisu of the platform doors and the soon-to-disappear six-door cars:


Source: tiyodalain on YouTube

Six-door cars being scrapped at Nagano General Rolling Stock Center. A bit of a shame, as they aren’t even 10 years old and still in very good shape.


Source: kawa209kei on YouTube
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Old May 22nd, 2011, 04:01 PM   #2569
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What a waste of 6-door cars. I'm not a fan of JR East's policy of building new cars and having them serve such short lifespans, it seems like a rather irresponsible practice. At least with other cars like a few of the 253 series and some of the 209 series they have sold them to other operators or refitted them.
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Old May 22nd, 2011, 06:37 PM   #2570
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quashlo View Post
Tōkyū Musashi Kosugi Station construction update
This one is down the road from my area (Hiyoshi) so I pass through here everyday.
Just wanted to say that they stopped the construction of the transfer tunnel between the Tokyu/JR Nanbu part of the station to the JR Shonan-Shinyuku Line/Yokosuka Line part for a few weeks for some reason. They've since restarted it; I'm patiently waiting for it since it'll cut that long walk in half!

I had no idea there'd be a tenant building on top of the Tokyu part-- So it'll be like Hiyoshi station then?
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Old May 22nd, 2011, 06:48 PM   #2571
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quashlo View Post
Tōkyō-area railways prepare for summer electricity shortage
They've already started the campaign to the public. On the Tokyu Toyoko line's "TOQ-Vision" monitors on the train, there's PSAs running talking about the 節電 (Setsu Den or Electric Conservation) measures they're taking. For example, they've taken out every other flouresent bulb in the concourse areas of all the stations. They've put proximity sensors on the vending machines to turn the lighting of them on only when someone's in front of it. They turn power off to 3/4 of the faregates and TVMs at big stations during off-peak times... The Tobu Tojo line has done the most: They don't have the lights on in most of the trains during the day, and also cut off power to all the escalators on the line.
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Old May 22nd, 2011, 08:36 PM   #2572
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Originally Posted by AG View Post
What a waste of 6-door cars. I'm not a fan of JR East's policy of building new cars and having them serve such short lifespans, it seems like a rather irresponsible practice. At least with other cars like a few of the 253 series and some of the 209 series they have sold them to other operators or refitted them.
In their defense, if these weren't such one-off cars or actually part of complete formations (with cab cars) being phased out, I think you would have seen them shifted to other lines. They're already reusing many of the 209 series trains, but only after getting rid of some of the non-cab cars, as most of the lines they're getting shifted onto (Sotobō Line, Uchibō Line, Sōbu Line east of Chiba, Nambu Line, etc.) don't need that many cars to begin with.

I can almost guarantee that in another 10-15 years when they start phasing out the current sets on the Yamanote Line, they will be shifted onto other lines. Perhaps others can chime in on their thoughts, but I actually prefer JR East's policy compared to what JR West does (run them for as long as possible). Rolling stock technology is constantly being improved, so there's direct operational benefits (energy efficiency, reliability) from replacing trains that might only be 20 years old.
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Old May 22nd, 2011, 08:38 PM   #2573
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I had no idea there'd be a tenant building on top of the Tokyu part-- So it'll be like Hiyoshi station then?
I don't think it will be anywhere near as big. The construction notice says the GFA of the building is only ~7,600 sq m and it's only three stories tall. If you consider the elevated tracks are already two stories, then they're only building one extra story on top. Plus, if you look at the aerial of the station in that post, you can see that only part of the station will be covered.

Actually seems a bit small, really... Perhaps once most of the station-related construction is done, they will build something a little bit more grand (and fitting) for Musashi Kosugi, maybe as part of a redevelopment tower.
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Old May 22nd, 2011, 09:35 PM   #2574
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quashlo View Post
I actually prefer JR East's policy compared to what JR West does (run them for as long as possible). Rolling stock technology is constantly being improved, so there's direct operational benefits (energy efficiency, reliability) from replacing trains that might only be 20 years old.
To me, a bit of both... energy efficiency is very important and will only become more important, so in that regard I think it's not a bad idea. From a railfan point of view, I like a lot of JR West's older equipment, especially the express rolling stock. The 103s on the Osaka Loop, however, I think it's about time they go. I'll be interested to see what replaces them. Maybe something related to the 321s?
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Old May 23rd, 2011, 01:43 PM   #2575
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What's so special about those maroon ties?
http://img683.imageshack.us/img683/8...arita11058.jpg
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Old May 23rd, 2011, 03:01 PM   #2576
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Originally Posted by quashlo View Post
I don't think it will be anywhere near as big.
Happened to change from Rapid Express to Local at Musashi Kosugi today on the way home. That station has all kinds of stuff on the concourse level there. There's a Tokyu store, various restaurants, and salons. I think they'll use the extra part at the top for a connecting bridge/plaza to the building they're going to do next door... Also those platform extensions include elevators too; they have the scaffolding around the shafts and are putting in the elevator cars themselves this week. Also the roof canopy supports are up as well.
I can get pix tomorrow if it's not rainy like today (and my commute isn't jammed up like this morning. A train ran into someone in Akihabara on the JR Keihin Tohoku line. It screwed my westside Yamanote line ride up from Shibuya to Ikebukuro completely.)
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Old May 23rd, 2011, 08:26 PM   #2577
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What's so special about those maroon ties?
http://img683.imageshack.us/img683/8...arita11058.jpg
Not really a rail engineer, so can't say for sure, but most of them are part of the special switch used at this particular location, I believe to increase strength / durability to handle 160 kph operations with the Skyliner. If you compare to the prestressed concrete sleepers on the other sections, these ones appear to be steel and are fastened directly to the concrete bed using an extra set of bolts on the outer ends.

The part closest to us in that picture may have the special sleepers just because it is the joint between the straight track section along the station platforms and the turnout from the mainline track.

Some better pictures:
Source: http://maestro-cl.at.webry.info/

Approaching Narita Yukawa



Another turnout on the single-track section closer to Narita Airport

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Last edited by quashlo; May 23rd, 2011 at 08:35 PM.
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Old May 24th, 2011, 03:37 AM   #2578
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Kyōsan wins order for ATC equipment for Harbin Metro Line 1 and Gwangmyeong Light Rail Transit
http://www.nikkei.com/tech/news/arti...EBE2E2E2E2E2E2

Quote:
Kyōsan Electric Manufacturing has received new orders for automatic train control (ATC) equipment for Metro Line 1 in Harbin, China and a light rail system in Korea. The total contract value for both orders is ¥2 billion. The firm plans to increase is its proportion of revenue from overseas projects to 20% in three years, or about 10% more than what it was last fiscal year. Focusing on Asia, where railway construction is proceeding at a quick pace, Kyōsan hopes to expand its share overseas by marketing its unique technologies for railway operations systems and associated precision safety equipment.

The two orders are for Harbin Metro Line 1, scheduled to open in 2013, and a light rail transit system to open in Gwangmyeong, Korea in 2014. Kyōsan will supply ATC, automatic train operation (ATO), and other equipment. This is Harbin’s first of five subway projects planned to be constructed in the near-term. The Chinese and Korean orders are worth about ¥1 billion each.

Kyōsan’s revenues from overseas orders for the fiscal year ending March 2010 reached ¥7.5 billion, or 12% of its consolidated revenues of ¥65.1 billion. Using experience developed in Japan, the firm is marketing complex systems such as ATC, and will increase its overseas revenue share to 20% in about three years. Competition with major European firms such as Germany’s Siemens is increasing for railway infrastructure orders in Asian markets.
The orders are for the following equipment:
  • Automatic train protection (ATP) / train detection (TD) wayside and on-board equipment
  • Automatic train operation (ATO) wayside and on-board equipment
  • Converter-brake-inverter (CBI) equipment
The Harbin Metro Line 1 order is a joint win with the 14th Research Institute of the China Electronics Technology Group Corporation (Nanjing, China), while the Gwangmyeong Light Rail Transit order appears to be a joint win with LS Electronics.
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Old May 27th, 2011, 06:45 PM   #2579
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Driving rain delays removal of platform canopies at Ōsaka Station
http://www.asahi.com/travel/rail/new...105190031.html

Quote:
An unforeseen situation is troubling JR West at the new JR Ōsaka Station, which only recently celebrated its grand opening early this month. The railway discovered that rain carried by the wind was making its way into the station and underneath the large canopy—the symbol of the station renovation—leaving the railway unable to touch the old platform canopies, originally slated to be removed. The view that the railway had boasted about, originally intended to be reminiscent of the open airiness of European train stations, could now be restricted by the platform canopies.

The new Time Square underneath the large station canopy was constructed above the platform bridge connecting the north and south station tenant buildings, and the original selling point was being able to look down on the trains arriving at and departing from the platforms like a railway model set-up.

On the evening of May 18, Hashimoto Atsushi (27), an Ōsaka City office worker, brought his one-year old son with him to the Time Square. Son in arms, he tried to watch the trains moving in and out of the station platforms, but the old platform canopies blocked his field-of-vision, making the trains difficult to see. “It’s a new station, but there are old things still jumbled in with everything,” said Hashimoto.

The large canopy is approx. 180 m in length from east to west and approx. 100 m in width north to south, and connects from the 12th floor of the North Gate Building on the north side of the station, which opened on May 4, with the eighth floor of the South Gate Building, designed to cover the six platforms lined up beneath.

According to JR West, some of the platform canopies date to 1940 (Shōwa 15), before the war, and the railway originally planned to remove all of the canopies except for sections a few meters in length on either end of the platforms. The railway advertised the design, saying it “wanted passengers getting on and off the trains to experience the openness of the large canopy, stretching as high as 55 m above.”

However, after the completion of the large canopy in October of last year, the railway discovered that misty rain carried by horizontal winds was making its way onto the station platforms from the openings at either end of the large canopy. One of JR West’s construction staff noticed the strange sight, prompting the railway to consider a solution.

Around that time, the railway widened Platform 8 by about four meters, but in light of the completion of the large canopy, opted out on extending out the platform canopy. The railway construction staff then observed passengers standing on the uncovered section of platform with an umbrella in hand. After JR West investigated the issue, it discovered that even if there was heavy rain, there were no problems if the wind was weak, but even light rain under heavy winds could cause droplets to make their way underneath the large canopy and onto the platforms.

As a result, JR West quickly halted work to remove the platform canopies, originally scheduled to take place following the grand opening of the station on May 4.

Division chief of JR West’s Creative Department Miyazaki Hiroshi says, “We can’t leave it like this, so we will remove the old canopies to the extent possible and are looking at strategies to prevent rain from getting onto passengers.” It appears that the railway is currently considering several options, including switching out the old canopies with translucent replacements.”

Old platform canopies (foreground) still remain as a result of rain blowing underneath the large canopy (background). (JR Ōsaka Station)


Train platforms beneath the large dome canopy. The railway has been unable to remove the platform canopies as a result of driving rain getting through the opening. (Kita Ward, Ōsaka City)


The platform canopies that cannot be removed.


Rendering of the completed interior of JR Ōsaka Station. Passengers can experience the large open space between the platforms and large canopy. (Courtesy of JR West)

Didn’t know this before, but apparently the new station is designed by Mitooka Eiji, and there are some special tours daily through the station.

Based on the regular May press conference by JR West’s president, it sounds like they will continue with the platform canopy removal later. As shown in some of the photos a while back, they had already removed some on the platform sections closest to the platform bridge in order to do work on the ceiling (I guess this means the “underbody” of the bridge). Based on the situation during the rainy season, they are considering converting the platform canopies to translucent designs, but as there are uncertainties, they are still analyzing the situation and will come up with a solution and complete the work by the end of the fiscal year (i.e., March of next year).

Regarding that bus lane that passengers aren’t allowed to cross, JR West will also see how operations pan out after fixed-route and highway express buses begin using the bus lane on 2011.05.22 and 2011.06.01, respectively.

In other JR West news, they will also be upgrading their automatic faregates at all 291 of their stations in the Keihanshin (Ōsaka – Kōbe – Kyōto) region, increasing the service rate from 45 pax/min to 60 pax/min. The new faregates will also be designed to meet the needs of the Spring 2013 nationwide IC card interoperability rollout (faregates at 29 stations will be adapted for the rollout, so only 262 stations will be replaced). This will cost approx. ¥19.3 billion.
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Old May 27th, 2011, 06:46 PM   #2580
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Ridership at JR Ōsaka Station up 14% year-over-year
http://www.sankeibiz.jp/business/new...2303025-n1.htm

Quote:
At a regular press conference on May 20, JR West president Sasayuki Takayuki announced that daily entries and exits at JR Ōsaka Station up to May 18 showed a 14% year-over-year increase as a result of the opening of the new North Gate Building station tenant building on the north side of JR Ōsaka Station, as well as the impact of the opening of the JR Ōsaka Mitsukoshi Isetan department store and the Lucua retail facility. The railway determined the information based on the operating statistics of ticket vending machines.

In addition, the total number of store visitors to both JR Ōsaka Mitsukoshi Isetan and Lucua during the same period reached an average of approx. 370,000 visitors daily. Approx. 500,000 people visited the two facilities on opening day, easily topping the original projection of 400,000 people, and daily average visitors for May 4-18 beat projections by 200,000 to 300,000.

While sales at the two stores have not been released, JR West president Sasaki explained that Mitsukoshi Isetan was performing mostly according to forecasts while Lucua was doing very well. In addition, judging from relatively good visitor levels at surrounding department stores, Sasaki was hopeful: “There’s competition (with other stores), but there’s also cooperation, and we are hoping to broadcast the uniqueness of the area across the entire region.”

Meanwhile, in regards to sales at Mitsukoshi Isetan falling within original forecasts, Sasaki remarked, “This is currently ‘wintertime’ for department stores, so it’s understandable.” Sasaki said he expects that it will take some time for customers to know about Mitsukoshi Isetan’s specialty in designing ‘lifestyle’ sales floor spaces and the convenience of its baggage concierge service.
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