ゆりかもめ東京臨海新交通臨海線

( Yurikamome )

New Transit Yurikamome (新交通ゆりかもめ, Shinkōtsū Yurikamome), formerly the Tokyo Waterfront New Transit Waterfront Line (東京臨海新交通臨海線, Tōkyō Rinkai Shinkōtsū Rinkai-sen), is an automated guideway transit service operated by Yurikamome, Inc., connecting Shimbashi to Toyosu, via the artificial island of Odaiba in Tokyo, Japan, a market in which it competes with the Rinkai Line.

The line is named after the black-headed gull (yurikamome in Japanese), a common denizen of Tokyo Bay and the official metropolitan bird.

Before its 1995 opening, it was widely feared that the Yurikamome would end up as a multibillion-yen white elephant. The artificial island of Odaiba, which it serves, had been designed and constructed at prodigious expense before Japan's economic crash and, much like London's equally beleaguered Canary Wharf, there simply did not seem to be enough demand to support it. In the first few months of operation, ridership hovered around 27,000 passengers per day,[1] only a little less than the predicted 29,000, but still far less than the 80,000 passengers needed to be profitable.

However, in 1996, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government re-zoned Odaiba from pure business and residential to also permit entertainment zones. The island provided Tokyo with a strip of livable seaside, and within one year, ridership doubled to 60,000.[1] As more and more restaurants, shopping malls, exhibition centers and museums opened, traffic continued to grow.[1]

It is not just the island that became popular, as the Yurikamome had become an attraction in itself.[1] To raise itself from ground level to the Rainbow Bridge, the Yurikamome makes a 270-degree loop, providing panoramic views of both mainland Tokyo and Odaiba.[1]

1 November 1995: Shimbashi-Ariake opens, using temporary Shimbashi station 22 March 2001: Current Shimbashi station opens, temporary station closes 2 November 2002: Shiodome Station opens[2] 27 March 2006: Ariake-Toyosu opens; all stations adopt letter/number identification based on Tokyo Metro.[3] 16 March 2019: Renamed 2 stations; Fune-no-kagakukan → Tokyo International Cruise Terminal, Kokusai-tenjijō-seimon → Tokyo Big Sight[4]

An accident on the Yurikamome occurred on the afternoon of 14 April 2006. According to a government commission, one of the axles on the six-car train was cracked due to metal fatigue, causing a rubber tire on the train to fall off.[5] The train came to a halt near Fune-no-kagakukan station, and services were suspended on the entire line.[6] This came at the start of a busy weekend when events were taking place at Tokyo Big Sight on Odaiba, but, according to news reports, alternate means of transportation were offered and there was no major confusion. The Yurikamome resumed limited train service on April 17 while further inspections and tests continued, with full service restored on 19 April.

Future plans

At over 110,000 passengers per day, the Yurikamome is making a net profit and will pay off its loans in full faster than the 20 years originally anticipated. Operating frequency, hours of operation and number of trainsets have been continually revised upwards to accommodate the ever-increasing number of passengers.

A further extension from Toyosu to Kachidoki is currently[when?] under consideration.[7] The extension has become more likely as part of infrastructure improvements for the 2020 Summer Olympics, which will largely be held within the Yurikamome corridor around Toyosu, Ariake and Odaiba, with six competition venues along its route.[8][9]

^ a b c d e Iwata, Kazuaki (June 1998). "Tokyo's New Waterfront Transit System" (PDF). Japan Rail and Transport Review. ^ "鉄道発祥の地「汐留」に、新しい街と新しい駅-都営地下鉄大江戸線、新交通ゆりかもめ「汐留駅」11月2日に開業-" [A new town and a new station in Shiodome, the birthplace of railways: Toei Oedo Line, New Transit Yurikamome “Shiodome Station” Opens November 2nd]. kotsu.metro.tokyo.jp. 12 July 2002. Archived from the original on 15 October 2002. Retrieved 7 August 2022. ^ Terada, Hirokazu (19 January 2013). データブック日本の私鉄 [Databook: Japan's Private Railways]. Japan: Neko Publishing. pp. 216–220. ISBN 978-4-7770-1336-4. ^ "船の科学館駅及び国際展示場正門駅の駅名改称日が決まりました!" [The date of renaming the Fune-no-Kagakukan Station and the International Exhibition Center Main Gate Station has been decided!] (PDF). yurikamome.co.jp (in Japanese). 15 January 2019. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 March 2019. Retrieved 7 August 2022. ^ "2ND LD: Yurikamome wheel fell off as result of metal fatigue: gov't". Japan: Yahoo News Online. 17 April 2007. Archived from the original on 11 September 2007. ^ Cite error: The named reference jptimes was invoked but never defined (see the help page). ^ "東京都港湾局 臨海副都心まちづくり推進計画 都市基盤の整備". Kouwan.metro.tokyo.jp. Archived from the original on 2 October 2011. Retrieved 8 August 2011. ^ Cite error: The named reference WSJ was invoked but never defined (see the help page). ^ "五輪で東京に1000万人 過密都市ゆえの課題多く" [10 million people in Tokyo for Olympics, Many problems due to overcrowded city]. 日本経済新聞. 10 September 2013. Archived from the original on 31 July 2022. Retrieved 10 September 2013.
Photographies by:
Daniel L. Lu (user:dllu) - CC BY-SA 4.0
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