• Shinkansen extended on Japan's west coast

  • General discussion of passenger rail systems not otherwise covered in the specific forums in this category, including high speed rail.
General discussion of passenger rail systems not otherwise covered in the specific forums in this category, including high speed rail.

Moderators: mtuandrew, gprimr1

  by lpetrich
Services begin on Hokuriku Shinkansen | International Railway Journal It extends the 117-km Tokyo-Nagano line by 113 km to Kanazawa, giving 230 km. Tokyo-Kanazawa travel time went down by 1h 20m to 2h 30m.

Hokuriku Shinkansen ready for launch | International Railway Journal goes into more detail about this line.
With the completion of the line to Kanazawa, attention now turns to the continuation of the Hokuriku Shinkansen west to Fu kui and Tsuruga. Construction began on the 120.7km extension in 2012 with an official completion date of 2025, but following December's general election it now looks likely that Shinkansen services could begin running west of Kanazawa much sooner.

In the run-up to the general election on December 14 the Liberal Democratic Party, which now holds a majority in the House of Representatives in coalition with the Komeito party, had campaigned to accelerate the expansion of the Shinkansen network with the aim of spreading the benefits of economic recovery to all regions of Japan. According to reports in the Japanese press, the government and the ruling coalition agreed at a meeting on January 8 to bring forward the completion date for the Kanazawa - Tsuruga section from 2025 to 2022, and a decision will be made this summer on whether to open the Kanazawa - Fu kui section as early as 2020.

In addition, the 211km second phase of the Hokkaido Shinkansen from Shin-Hakodate to Sapporo is now due to open in 2030, five years earlier than previously scheduled, and the extension of Kyushu Shinkansen to Nagasaki will also be brought forward, although no dates have been given for this project.
The Tohoku Shinkansen is being extended from Aomori to Hakodate as the Hokkaido Shinkansen, and that line should open next year. It will run in the Seikan Tunnel between Honshu (the main Japanese island) and Hokkaido.

The Tokyo-Nagano line has a branch northward from Takasaki to Niigata, also on Japan's west coast.

Hokuriku Shinkansen opens between Nagano and Kanazawa - Railway Gazette
Under construction since 1992, the line descends from Nagoya through the mountainous region to reach the west coast of Honshu. There are several major tunnels, of which the longest is the Iiyama tunnel at 22 251 m, and snow countermeasures to accommodate the region’s harsh winters. The line turns west towards Toyama and Kanazawa, serving six intermediate stations. The mountainous landscape means the maximum speed is 260 km/h.
  by Froggie
Wow, that's really cool! I have a friend who used to live in Kanazawa and I remember how hard he found it to get to and fro. This is a huge bump in terms of connectivity!
  by lpetrich
Talks begin on Hokuriku Shinkansen extension | International Railway Journal
The initial part of this extension is now open, as this thread's OP described. The next part is Kanazawa - Tsuruga with a distance of 120.7 km, to be done in 2022.

They are now considering three alternatives for the third part, which will go southeastward from Tsuruga.
Maibara: 44 km, will use the Tokaido Shinkansen, already a busy line
Kyoto: 81 km
Osaka: 123 km