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Old July 23rd, 2011, 06:55 AM   #2761
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Ōsaka Station City redux: Part 4

Next, the recently-opened expressway bus terminal.

The expressway bus terminal was relocated to the first floor of the North Gate Building as part of the station renovation, together with Hankyū Bus’ Umeda stop at the North Exit of Ōsaka Station and Ōsaka Municipal Bus’ Ōsaka Ekimae stop. First relocations took place 2011.05.22, with two stops each of Hankyū Bus and Ōsaka Municipal Bus moving in, followed by 10 stops for West JR Bus (bus subsidiary of JR West) and the JR expressway bus ticket center (previously at the Sakurabashi Exit of the station) on 2011.06.01. Previously, Ōsaka Municipal Bus used the Midōsuji South Exit, West JR Bus used the Sakurabashi Exit, and Hankyū Bus used the Midōsuji North Exit, but the new terminal consolidates most (not all) of the three bus areas.

First, some pics pre-opening (2011.05):
Source: http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/map/

Nice and clean.



For passenger safety, the waiting areas are separated by barricade, with gates positioned at the proper locations to align with bus doors. I suppose it’s a dumbed-down version of platform doors.



Training bus to get operators familiar with the new layout and routes



The terminal entrance is gate-controlled to prevent private autos from entering. Originally, this was on a major pedestrian access route to get from the station to Yodobashi Camera, so JR is looking into possibly adding a crosswalk and traffic signal here. Peak bus traffic is approx. 80 buses per hour, so it shouldn’t be impossible, but the Police Department refused to give approval on the grounds of safety, leaving us with no crossing at the moment.



JR expressway bus on operator training duties

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Old July 23rd, 2011, 06:56 AM   #2762
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Ōsaka Station City redux: Part 5

Bus terminal post-opening (2011.06):
Source: http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/map/

From Bay 1, looking into the terminal



With limited space, multi-structured terminals are common in Japan. However, there was also some road space for cars sacrificed… The station renovation required the relocation and narrowing of an arterial road on the north side of the station (the much narrower replacement road comes in from the bottom left corner) and constructing the North Gate Building in the road’s former location. The bus terminal sits approximately on the former arterial ROW and directly beneath the Atrium Square.



The JR expressway bus ticket center outside the Sakurabashi Exit of the station was relocated here.



They quickly installed this simple seating since the previous set of photos.



Hand-operated “platform doors”



Full-color LCD departure boards in operation:
13:10 Tōkaidō Midday Ltd. Exp. No. 16 for Shinjuku Station and Tōkyō Station
14:30 San’yōdō Midday Lts. Exp. Hiroshima No. 3 for Hiroshima Station



Hankyū Bus waiting inside the terminal.
There is a signalized crossing with crossing arms at this location.





The Hankyū Bus and Ōsaka Municipal Bus bays are located on the island.



The fencing is taller here to discourage jaywalking, but it appears there has only been limited success. I don’t think another signal here would be a big deal (minimum crossing time should only be about 10 seconds anyways), although it would cost money. There’s going to be reshuffling of the crosswalk locations anyways as part of the build-out of the Umeda North Yard, so this is only a temporary situation.

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Old July 23rd, 2011, 06:56 AM   #2763
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Ōsaka Station City redux: Part 6

Another set:
Source: http://saitoshika.blog119.fc2.com/



You can see the bus bay occupancy board hanging from the ceiling at right to quickly notify drivers of the parking situation. Parking should not be a problem assuming service is on-time, but the board should come in handy if there are service disruptions.



JR expressway bus departure board





Jaywalker…



Umeda North Yard buildings under construction. The bus terminal is to the left outside of the frame.The arterial road that used to cross here now curves off to the north, as shown, and was downsized to two lanes only. Pedestrian decks are supposed to connect these buildings to Ōsaka Station City and Hankyū Umeda Station.



Video tour (2011.06.04):


Source: dkkawachi on YouTube
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Old July 23rd, 2011, 06:57 AM   #2764
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Ōsaka Station City redux: Part 7

Finish with some videos:

Short daytime tour.
Crane madness for the Umeda North Yard @ 2:20.


Source: junjun7221 on YouTube

Another assortment of daytime clips:


Source: tetsubakamovie on YouTube

Nighttime shots from the same photographer who took the night shots:


Source: OsakaNightTube on YouTube
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Old July 23rd, 2011, 06:57 AM   #2765
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JR East considers rebuilding damaged lines as LRT
http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/e-japan/miy...OYT8T00263.htm

Quote:
In regards to rail lines that were damaged in the earthquake and are as yet unrestored, at a panel discussion held in Sendai City on June 30 JR East director Fukuzawa Yūji remarked, “What shall we do with the Sanriku lines? I would love for the debate to consider light rail transit (LRT) as well.” It’s believed that Fukuzawa had the Kesennuma Line and the Ōfunato Line in mind when making reference to the “Sanriku lines”, and Fukuzawa indicated that he is considering LRT as an option (and not only the existing design) in the restoration of these lines.

Regarding the relocation of the lines to higher ground in the urbanized areas of coastal cities as being considered by Miyagi Prefecture, Director Fukuzawa said, “If the town is relocated, the railway moves with it. For lines with low ridership, I really would like the debate to consider passenger-friendly LRT designs.”
I was a little skeptical at first, but perhaps this may be fruitful and we could see LRT lines running in the Tōhoku area in 10 years.
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Old July 23rd, 2011, 06:58 AM   #2766
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Yokohama’s municipal bus and subway post surpluses for FY2010
http://sankei.jp.msn.com/region/news...2490008-n1.htm

Quote:
On July 4, the Yokohama City Transportation Bureau announced the FY2010 financial results for the municipal bus and municipal subway operations. The final accounts showed an operating surplus of ¥562 million for municipal bus operations and ¥1.06 billion for municipal subway operations. This is the first time both municipal bus and subway operations posted operating, ordinary, and net surpluses since the opening of the municipal subway in 1972.

According to the city’s Transportation Bureau, municipal bus operations were successful in reducing expenses, doing a thorough job of ensuring fuel-efficient operations (such as by avoiding rapid acceleration) and improving efficiency in management of replacement bus maintenance components. The municipal subway realized an increase in revenues as a result of its ekichika (station retail) business, establishing retail stores inside Yokohama Station, but was also able to reduce expenses through efforts towards electricity conservation and other measures.

The city’s Transportation Bureau says, “FY2010 is the fourth year of our five-year financial improvement plan that ends in FY2011. We’re pleased that we were able to realize an across-the-board surplus before entering the final year.”
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Old July 23rd, 2011, 07:00 AM   #2767
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Saitama City looking at two options for new Iwatsuki Station on Saitama Railway extension
http://www.nikkei.com/news/local/art...E2E2EBE0E0E4E6

Quote:
In regards to the extension of Subway Line 7 (Saitama Railway) and the location of the extension’s terminal at Iwatsuki Station, it was discovered on July 22 that Saitama City is focusing discussion on two different options: directly underneath Iwatsuki Station on the Tōbu Noda Line, and beneath the East Exit of the station closer to Tōkyō. Tōbu Railway’s Iwatsuki Station is slated to receive a new elevated station concourse in 2015, and there is the possibility that construction of a station directly beneath could inflate the original cost estimates by almost ¥10 billion, leading to consideration of an alternative option to build the station underground at the station’s East Exit.

The extension being planned is approx. 7.3 km long from the line’s current terminus at Urawa Misono Station to Iwatsuki Station. Originally, the plan was to construct the new terminal station directly beneath Tōbu Railway’s Iwatsuki Station, establishing station exits at the East Exit, home to the traditional urbanized area of Iwatsuki, as well as the West Exit, where land readjustment projects are underway.

Under the original vision, the construction cost of the extension would be ¥75 billion. As a result of optimistic forecasts, new estimates by the city and others project a higher cost for the extension. In addition, if the new station were to be constructed directly beneath Tōbu Railway’s station building, which will be reconstructed with an elevated concourse, there will be a need for additional works to strengthen the foundation of the station building, increasing the cost to ¥80 billion.

The city is hoping to avoid cost increases. As the elevation of the Tōbu station concourse would secure some level of convenient access to and from the West Exit, a proposal to keep down costs by building the new station underneath the station’s East Exit has surfaced.
In related news, another article says that Saitama City conducted a survey of companies in late February and early March, targeting 6,500 companies in the Greater Tōkyō area in the health / sports, health care / nursing, and agricultural production / food production industries regarding their level of interest in the proposed extension of the line—specifically, whether they would consider establishing new businesses or relocating their businesses along the extension. The city received responses from 587 companies. A total of 355 companies (60.5%) said intermediate stations on the extension would not be candidates for relocation or business expansion, and only 34 companies (5.8%) said they would consider relocation or business expansion.

I’m guessing they wanted to determine how much employment concentration they could expect around the proposed stations among businesses already in the general area.
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Old July 23rd, 2011, 07:01 AM   #2768
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JR East formally apologizes to Tōkyō Metropolitan Government for post-earthquake response
http://www.nikkei.com/news/category/...E39191E2E2E2E2

Quote:
As a strategy for passengers stranded and unable to reach home during an earthquake or other large-scale disaster situation, JR East revealed plans on June 24 to institute measures such as opening up station buildings at major terminal stations. After suspending service on all of its zairaisen (conventional lines), rolling down shutters at stations, and forcing stranded commuters out of stations immediately following the Great East Japan Earthquake on March 11, JR East received criticism from the Tōkyō Metropolitan Government, and decided to re-evaluate its policies.

The railway will now discuss with concerned agencies regarding which sections of stations should be opened up as standby spaces. The railway is also considering supplying major terminal stations with a fixed amount of blankets, drinking water, and first-aid supplies.

Regarding the railway’s response on the day of the earthquake, the Tōkyō Metropolitan Government filed objections in May, saying JR East had “abandoned its duties and responsibilities as a railway operator.” On June 20, JR East president Seino Satoshi visited the Tōkyō Metropolitan Government offices and apologized to Tōkyō governor Ishihara Shintarō, saying, “The end result was that we forced out our passengers.”
Tōkyō MX news report (2011.06.20):

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Old July 23rd, 2011, 07:01 AM   #2769
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Tōkyō Metropolitan Bureau of Transportation to roll out rewards points program

On 2011.08.01, the Tōkyō Metropolitan Bureau of Transportation will launch its new rewards points program, allowing passengers who use Toei transport to accumulate points that can be charged back as value on PASMO cards. All forms of Toei transport are part of the program:
  • Toei Subway
    • Asakusa Line
    • Mita Line
    • Shinjuku Line
    • Ōedo Line
  • Nippori–Toneri Liner
  • Toden Arakawa Line
  • Toei Bus
There are three different point accumulation methods:
  • Basic Points: Awarded depending on how many times you use Toei transport.
  • Weekend Bonus Points: Awarded for how many Saturdays, Sundays, or holidays you use Toei transport.
  • Transfer Points: Awarded for how many days you use two or more of the four types of Toei transport.
Accumulated points can be recharded to your PASMO card at all Toei Subway stations, and at Nippori Station, Nishi-Nippori Station, and Kumano Station on the Nippori–Toneri Liner.

Campaign website is here:
http://www.kotsu.metro.tokyo.jp/tokopo/index.html

Tōkyō Metropolitan Bureau of Transportation also selected an Edokko as their campaign mascot, model / talent Kinoshita Yukina. She was born and raised in shitamachi area (Katsushika Ward) and apparently took the Asakusa Line and Ōedo Line frequently.

Sankei News footage of press conference:



Toei infomercial:

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Old July 25th, 2011, 09:11 AM   #2770
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Hanshin Main Line construction updates: Part 1

Next, a tour of the multiple construction projects on the Hanshin Main Line (2011.05.08).

First, the elevation of the Hanshin Main Line surrounding Naruo Station. About 1.8 km of the line is being elevated between Kōshien Station and Mukogawa Station at the cost of approx. ¥29.7 billion. Project began in 2003 and will continue to 2018.
Source: okirakugoraku on YouTube

Inbound cab view, from Kōshien to Mukogawa.
As the train departs Kōshien, we can see they’ve already prepared the inbound temporary track just off to the left (north) of the existing inbound track. As they were able to secure space north of the station and existing ROW, they don’t need to do a switchout at this particular location, but instead before the station. As the track dips down to ground level immediately after the station, they will need to construct a new elevated approach into Kōshien Station above this existing ramp down. Approaching Naruo (0:30), the temporary track swerves out quite a ways, probably to provide clearance for the temporary outbound track to be constructed. Approaching Mukogawa (2:00), we see the track layout gets more complex, as there is a need to preserve a track connection with the Mukogawa Line, a small four-station local line. A temporary track connection has been built and is already in use (2:15), but it swerves out quite a bit to create space to lay the temporary inbound track.



Outbound direction, from Mukogawa to Kōshien. A little bit noisy and directly into the sun, but you can get a good view of the situation at Kōshien (2:00).



Next, some pictures at Naruo Station:
Source: http://okiraku-goraku.com/

Temporary station building. Faregates are actually located underground beneath the tracks, so there is a need to relocate the entrance to the underground passage (basically an extension of the existing underground passage, as the temporary inbound track is being constructed adjacent to the existing tracks.



I like Hanshin’s new signage.



Temporary inbound platform under construction. Can also seem TVMs on the left.



Temporary inbound track, looking eastbound towards Mukogawa. Track laying is done, and they are now working on the overhead.



Temporary inbound platform. Can really see the cant in both of these photos (the existing track also has some cant, so it’s nothing new).

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Old July 25th, 2011, 09:13 AM   #2771
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Hanshin Main Line construction updates: Part 2

Next, Kōshien Station, where detailed plans were recently published regarding major upgrades:
Source: http://okiraku-goraku.com/

Temporary inbound track being constructed to the north of the existing track. There’s half of a switch in place already, with the outside track to serve as the primary track and the secondary track joining it through this switch (the reverse of what happens with the existing inbound tracks).



We can see the complexity of the work involved here, as the temporary outside inbound track is actually aligned directly into the alighting-only platform on the left, primarily used during game days at Kōshien Stadium. They will likely remove this platform and expand the existing inbound island platform to fill in the extra space, shaving off a bit at the end on the right side in order to provide clearance for trains using the new switch.



Looking back at the alighting-only and island platforms serving inbound trains. We can see that only the ends of the platforms have been replaced with temporary structures that can be easily dismantled during the switch-out. Also visible is the temporary canopy built above the existing canopy, from which we can get a rough idea of the shape of the platform after they do the switch-out.



Western end of the alighting-only platform has also been converted to temporary platform. Obviously they intend to do something here with the track alignment eventually, but it doesn’t seem to be related to the track switch-out for the elevation of this section of the line.



Western end of the inbound island platform. With the opening of the Hanshin Namba Line in 2009, there were platform extensions carried out along the Namba Line to accommodate the longer Kintetsu trains, but at Kōshien Station these extensions were mostly temporary, likely keeping in mind that there were plans to carry out station-wide upgrades.

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Old July 25th, 2011, 09:13 AM   #2772
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Hanshin Main Line construction updates: Part 3

Next, the elevation of about 4 km of the line between Sumiyoshi and Ashiya, which includes the elevation of two stations (Ōgi and Fukae), elimination of 11 grade crossings, connection of 33 side streets, and construction of three frontage roads.

Outbound cab view from Ashiya to Uozaki.
Both the inbound and outbound tracks were shifted over to the temporary tracks (inbound track in 2009.04 and outbound track in 2010.10). To the left (south), the existing tracks have been completely removed and they appear to be doing mostly earthwork at the moment. We can also see the interesting temporary facilities at Fukae Station (1:00), with split north-side platforms, and Ōgi Station (1:55), a four-track station.


Source: okirakugoraku on YouTube

Next, the upgrades to Hanshin Sannomiya Station. The work (total cost approx. ¥15.3 billion) involves construction of a new East Exit, redesign of the West Exit, installation of new ventilation equipment, redesign of the station’s track layout, and installation of new elevators. This is a fairly complex project that involves expanding the original tunnels and shifting around platforms and tracks in an already-constrained station. Work began 2007.10.06 and is scheduled for completion 2013.03.31. The new East Exit will open in spring 2012.
First, an update from 2011.05.16:
Source: http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/map/

East Exit is on the right side of the image, West Exit on the left. Red is a new underground passage (approx. ¥700 million) and green is a new pedestrian bridge (approx. ¥1.6 billion) creating new connections between the rest of the station complex (JR, Hankyū, Kōbe Municipal Subway, etc.) and the new East Exit.



From this cross section, we can see just how little clearance they have to build the underground passage.



Track layout changes, which will resolve the unusual layout that exists today, where the stub track / bay platform is on one side (the outbound side) of the station, relocating it to the center instead (also improving operational flexibility at the same time). Instead of four narrow platforms, they will redesign the station with three wider platforms. The redesigned track layout will also allow them to greatly expand the west side of the platforms and create a single platform space spanning the inbound and outbound tracks. The platforms in Kōbe’s underground stations are some of the narrowest you’ll find anywhere in Japanese cities, so this is a long-needed improvement for the Hanshin platforms at Kōbe’s main terminal.



2011.04 photo on display, looking at the station from the east. As we can see, the tunnel walls are all new. These dug from surface level and constructed the new walls outside the envelope of the original tunnel, afterwards demolishing the walls and ceiling of the original tunnel.



2011.04 photo underneath the Sannomiya-Higashi intersection (where the Port Liner) crosses to get into Sannomiya Station. The roof of this space will become the roof of the concourse level. We can also see the original tunnel walls (only the side and a bit of the top remain), but judging from the height of the catenary, we can see that there really won’t be a whole lot of space to work with.



From the existing stub track looking east. We can see them constructing a new track further out to the right, which will eliminate the alighting-only platform on the south side of the station. You can also see the floor slab for the East Exit concourse. The circles in the ceiling of the new tunnel will be the location of new columns to support the tunnel ceiling, currently being propped up by the steel columns at left running down the center of the existing platform.





East end of the outbound track looking east. We can see a through-servicing Kintetsu train at right. Because the stub track for reversing trains is on this side of the station, there is some reduced operational flexibility, as trains departing inbound from the bay platform need to cross over the outbound track. The redesigned track and platform layout will resolve these issues.



East end of inbound platform looking east.



The ledge here is likely the floor of the underground passage and new East Exit.



An old photo from 2009.12.04, showing the large deck supporting the roadway above. The photographer is walking atop the ceiling of the old tunnel.

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Old July 25th, 2011, 09:14 AM   #2773
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Hanshin Main Line construction updates: Part 4

Another set (2011.05.25):
Source: http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/map/

The tunnel widening is only being conducted at the east end of the station. In the center, the old tunnel structure will still be preserved, but beautified.



At the west end, the walls of the old tunnel will be retained, but portions of the ceiling will be removed and replaced with a higher ceiling, allowing for a new ticketing entrance at the west end.



Current track (left) and future track (right). They will remove the platform at right (a temporary platform that replaced the original concrete one) and then expand the one at right over the existing tracks.





Column footings for the widened platform sections. Will be interesting to see how they plan to finish the last bits of work while retaining train service.



Few more a month later (2011.06.30):
Source: http://building-pc.cocolog-nifty.com/map/

Unobstructed view showing the newly-laid track and catenary in place. Can also see the floor slab for the East Exit concourse.





I’m curious how this will look and feel when finished… It barely looks tall enough.



From the east end of the bay platform looking east. The alighting-only platform at left will be removed.



Location of the future underground passage



Construction at the West Exit from street level, where they are removing sections of the old tunnel one block at a time.



Pretty well-preserved for a tunnel built in 1933.



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Old July 26th, 2011, 09:02 AM   #2774
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JICA agrees to fund Delhi Metro Phase 3
http://www.hindustantimes.com/Japan-...e1-725133.aspx

Quote:
The impasse over the sanctioning of a soft loan for Delhi Metro's phase 3 project is finally over. Japan, which was recently hit by disaster, will release the first instalment of the proposed loan for the 105km project in December. Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is all set
to fund Delhi Metro's upcoming Rs32,000 crore project as it has almost completed all requisite formalities.

"We are near the end of the appraisal process of the official request received from India's finance ministry about sanctioning of loan for Delhi Metro's phase 3. In December, we will be able to sanction the first part of the loan through signing of an agreement between India's finance ministry and the Japan government," Yuichiro Sano, representative, JICA.

Ministry of Finance, which will take the loan, will hand over the amount to Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC), he added.

"We are yet to receive any final communication from JICA about the sanctioning of the loan amount. If JICA sanctions the soft loan, the financial crunch for the project will reduce extensively," said a DMRC spokesperson.

On April 26, a JICA team had met Delhi Metro directors at Metro Bhawan to discuss the project's modalities of funding and loan requirements.

Delhi Metro had proposed a debt equity ratio of 60:40 under which the Centre and the Delhi governments will contribute 30% each and the rest will be raised by soft loans from JICA, said sources.

"The loan will be sanctioned at 1.40% rate of interest to be repaid in 30 years with a grace period of 10 years," said Sano. Earlier, JICA had given a soft loan to Delhi Metro at different rates of interest varying between 1.2% to 2.3% in phases 1 and 2. Appreciating the sustainability of the relationship between India and Japan for Metro projects, he added: "We have been supporting the Delhi metro project for the past 15 years. It seems out commitment is reducing as Delhi Metro's demand for monetary support is reducing."

In the first phase, JICA had given Delhi Metro 60% of the R10,571 crore project cost, while in the second phase the metro had received 55% of R19,600 crore from JICA. In phase 3 DMRC has asked for only 40% of about R32,000 crore, said JICA officials.

The phase 3 project has already got clearances from the state and the Centre and both the governments have made budgetary provisions to meet the initial cost.
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Old July 26th, 2011, 09:03 AM   #2775
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JICA offers soft loan, cooperation to Karachi Circular Railway
http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default...4-7-2011_pg5_3

Quote:
KARACHI: Offering soft loan and cooperation to Karachi Circular Railway, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has laid emphasis on the removal of encroachments on roadsides to improve the flow of traffic.

Team leader JICA Minoru Shibuya shared these suggestions while presenting Karachi Transport Improvement Project report to the Technical Committee, Karachi Mass Transit Cell (KMTC) Saturday.

With regard to Karachi Transport Improvement Project, JICA had started a survey in April 2010.

Director General KMTC Rasheed Mughal, team leader JICA Minoru Shibuya and representatives of DHA, Pakistan Railways, Port Qasim Authority, Traffic police, Finance Department Sindh, Transport Department Sindh and other concerned officials were present.

Mughal said the World Bank, with the cooperation of Japan, Government of Pakistan and Sindh Government, initiated Urban Transport Master Plan 2030. He informed 56 percent of the population here travels by those transports which are inadequate for them and are also in poor physical state.
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Old July 26th, 2011, 09:03 AM   #2776
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Hitachi pitches second monorail line for Singapore
The Straits Times

Quote:
Hitachi, the company that built the Sentosa monorail system, is proposing a similar system for Marina Bay.

The area, planned with fewer parking spaces to encourage the use of public transport, will eventually be served by five MRT lines.

Hitachi, which has supplied over 400 trains for 10 monorail systems in mainly Japanese cities, contends that a monorail is suitable for Marina Bay, and can double as a feeder to MRT stations there.

The Japanese company has made presentations to the Singapore Tourism Board, and will also meet the Urban Redevelopment Authority and Land Transport Authority (LTA) soon.

Hitachi Asia’s division general manager Jimmy Song said: “There’s a misconception that monorail is only good for theme parks. But actually, it’s a workable urban-transport solution.”

The system Hitachi has in mind, following a feasibility study, is a 5.8 km line with eight stops. It will link places like the Marina Barrage, the Marina Bay Sands integrated resort, the upcoming cruise centre, the new financial district, the future seafront residential enclave and Gardens by the Bay.

Hitachi said that if such a system, estimated to cost around US$200 million (S$242 million), is commissioned this year, it could be up and running by 2013. It expects ridership to start off at 3.3 million a year, and build up to 6.7 million by 2020.

The 7.8 km Bukit Panjang LRT system has a ridership of 17 million a year.

Mr Song said: “Unlike trams, monorail does not compete for road space. A monorail takes up air space. And the track is slimmer than an LRT track, so it costs less to build and is less intrusive.”

But therein lies the downside of monorail systems, say transport specialists.

Mr Rajan Krishnan, senior vice-president (Asia) of engineering consultancy Parsons Brinckerhoff, pointed out that because monorail systems run on single tracks, their carriages cannot be too broad or too heavy. This limits their passenger capacity.

The former LTA director of projects said monorail is more suitable in places where the passenger load is light, such as in Las Vegas or Sentosa.

“The demand can’t be too high and the distance can’t be too long,” he said. The proposed 5.8 km length of Hitachi’s Marina Bay line seems reasonable, but it really boils down to passenger load, he added.

Others point out that while a monorail may be about 50 per cent cheaper than say, an LRT system on a per-kilometre basis, an LRT system can have twice the carrying capacity.

Hitachi is not the only vendor that has suggested new transit options for Singapore. Companies like Bombardier and Alstom have proposed trams to ply areas such as Orchard Road and Marina Bay, but the LTA’s reception was lukewarm on the back of safety concerns for other vehicles and pedestrians.

Those working in the area welcome the possibility of a monorail. Said stock analyst John Rachmat: “I think this is a great idea. It will certainly make Singapore more liveable.”

Transit operator SMRT said there are pros and cons to each mode of travel. Its spokesman said: “Operationally, it’s possible to run LRT, tram or feeder buses to make commuting in the area seamless, although implementing a monorail or LRT system would take a longer time.

“The decision of what mode to employ would depend on when the developments are ready for use and how soon commuters need the connection to the various attractions around Marina Bay.”

Meanwhile, Mr Song acknowledged the Sentosa monorail could be improved. Complaints include its slowness, the long queues and having only three stops. Hitachi said it is in talks with Sentosa’s management on how the monorail can carry more people without major changes to the system.
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Old July 26th, 2011, 09:04 AM   #2777
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Minami-Shinjuku Station construction update

Some pics of the platform extensions at Minami-Shinjuku Station on the Odakyū Odawara Line (2011.06.07):
Source: http://www.okiraku-goraku.com/

Extension of the inbound platform (for Shinjuku), at the east end (closer to Shinjuku). Odakyū‘s goal is to convert local trains to 10-car formations to relieve overcrowding, and the plan calls for extended platforms at Minami-Shinjuku, Sangūbashi, and Yoyogi Hachiman, all local stops. This particular extension looks narrow, but the existing platform sections are actually fairly similar in width.



The outbound platform will likely get the same treatment, although there is not much movement right now.



Inbound platform elevator. Elevators have been installed as part of barrier-free upgrades, required for stations with daily ridership of 5,000 passengers or more. Due to space constraints, this was the only place to put it—unlike more ideal elevator installations, these only have doors on one side.



Outbound platform elevator. This one has some fencing around the elevator area, perhaps to prevent passenger queues at the doors (indicated by the two yellow triangles) from blocking access to the elevator.



Construction of the outbound platform canopy, which began in May. Odakyū is one of the more crowded private railway lines, so extending the canopy across more of the platform should help spread out the passenger load during rainy weather.

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Old July 26th, 2011, 09:05 AM   #2778
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Tōkyū Tōyoko Line platform extension construction updates: Part 1

Next, an update (2011.06.17) of the ongoing platform extensions on the Tōkyū Tōyoko Line to allow limited-stop trains to be converted to 10-car formations in conjunction with the start of through-service with the Tōkyō Metro Fukutoshin Line.

First is the inbound platforms at Naka-Meguro:
Source: http://okiraku-goraku.com/

East end, closer to Shibuya.
In order to get sufficient length (they need to extend about 40 m total), they will need to push the Tōyoko Line track (at left) outwards a bit. The closest part at the bottom is the bridge over the Meguro River, but they also have scaffolding and fencing set up on the aerial structure just past the bridge.



They will also be widening the platform at this end and have been carrying out seismic retrofits of the aerial structure at the station, so they have some more protective fencing set up to allow them to work in the small bit of space between the track and the soundwall.



The same location, but from ground level. We can expect the added sections of aerial structure to extend to around this far. As part of this work, they’ve also shifted the frontage road out a bit, closer to the Tōkyū Store (supermarket) at left.



On the opposite bank, looking underneath the scaffolding in the first picture. They are widening this end directly above this narrow residential alley.



The scope of the work is much more visible from street level. They have basically redesigned the columns and are now adding the additional sections on the outside. That one girder was especially bulky as it will need to support one end of the bridge across the river, but the ones further down are more reasonably sized.



View across the river.
It seems likely that they will try and shift the existing bridge into the new position, as opposed to constructing additions to the existing bridge or completely replacing it.



West end of the inbound platform, closer to Yokohama. They are dismantling the former storage area for maintenance cars and will extend this end, allowing them to quickly shift the Meguro River bridge without worrying about how to expand the platform together in alignment with the track. They can simply use the extra platform space created at this end to shift the train stopping location west a bit.

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Old July 26th, 2011, 09:06 AM   #2779
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Tōkyū Tōyoko Line platform extension construction updates: Part 2

Next is the outbound platforms at Naka-Meguro:
Source: http://okiraku-goraku.com/

The outbound platform will be extended at both the Shibuya and Yokohama ends, but the platform will be shifted slightly west to the Yokohama end, so the Shibuya-end extension is pretty minor. However, it appears they will do something similar to the inbound track, and they have scaffolding and fencing up on the aerial structure on the opposite bank of the river.



On this side of the river, they have scaffolding up along about one carlength of the aerial structure. Judging from the limited clearance with the adjacent building, it’s clear that they only intend to do minor track realignment here.



Same location as above, from ground level.



Yokohama end, where they will swing the Tōyoko Line track out to create more space with the Tōkyō Metro Hibiya Line (specifically the crossover from the Hibiya Line to the Tōyoko Line) to construct the platform extension.



Aerial structure on this section has already been completed. With the curved columns, you can tell they really tried not to completely kill the area beneath, which is used for bicycle parking. They still have to clean up all the cables and install the soundwalls, though.



Yokohama end from platform level, as a through-servicing Tōkyū train from the Hibiya Line takes the crossover.

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Old July 26th, 2011, 09:07 AM   #2780
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Tōkyū Tōyoko Line platform extension construction updates: Part 3

Gakugei Daigaku, Jiyūgaoka, Den’en Chōfu, and Musashi Kosugi:
Source: http://okiraku-goraku.com/

Gakugei Daigaku:
Shibuya end is mostly finished, just need some of the surfacing treatments. No hurry here.



Yokohama end looks empty, but they’ve cleaned up all the electrical equipment so they will probably start soon. These are fairly simple extensions, so they should have no trouble finishing.



Jiyūgaoka:
Outbound platform, Shibuya end. Need to shift out the outside track to create enough space, requiring conversion of the embankment slope to a vertical retaining wall design. They still seem to be working on the slope, so there is no movement on the tracks yet.



The fencing continues up to here, but it seems likely they will also need to widen the overpass over the road as well.



Inbound platform. No movement yet, but this little booth at the end of the platform probably doesn’t have many days left.



Den’en Chōfu:
This station was undergrounded in 1995 as part of a grade-sep project, and they reserved enough space at that time to do a platform extension. Work has just begun, here assembling the steel reinforcement in place. They look almost done and should pour pretty soon. As only the Tōyoko Line platforms need to be extended, they are leaving the Meguro Line side (to the left, along the columns) untouched.



Inbound platform appears to be a little further along, with some of the concrete already poured. We can tell they designed for the platform extensions in mind by looking at the placement of the columns supporting the station box.



Musashi Kosugi:
Outbound platform, Shibuya end. Extensions for both platforms will be at this end. As this end of the station sits above the JR Nambu Line tracks, the basic design of the platforms is comprised of bridge girders like the existing tracks. Columns and beams for the canopy are already in place, they just have to install the canopy and the rest of the platform.



Like at Den’en Chōfu, they are only extending the Tōyoko Line side, so we will probably see some fencing going up on the Meguro Line eventually.

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