Shin'etsu Main Line
|Shinetsu Main Line|
|Locale||Gunma, Nagano, Niigata prefectures|
|Termini||Takasaki - Yokokawa
Shinonoi - Niigata
|Track gauge||1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)|
|Electrification||1,500 V DC overhead catenary|
The Shinetsu Main Line (信越本線 Shin'etsu-honsen?) is a pair of lines operated by the East Japan Railway Company (JR East) in Japan. The bulk of the line runs from Shinonoi Station in Nagano Prefecture to Niigata Station in Niigata Prefecture, with several connections to other lines including Hokuriku Main Line at Naoetsu Station in Niigata Prefecture. The other section of the Shinetsu Main Line runs from Takasaki Station in Gunma Prefecture to Yokokawa Station in Gunma Prefecture. Additionally, there are three freight branches, namely from Echigo-Ishiyama Station to Niigata Kamotsu Terminal, from Kami-Nuttari Junction to Nuttari Station, and from Kami-Nuttari Junction to Higashi-Niigata-kō Station. The name of the line refers to the old names for Nagano and Niigata Prefectures, Shinano (信濃) and Echigo (越後), which the main section still connects.
The separation of the two sections of the line was a result of the abandonment of the section between Yokokawa and Karuizawa and the reassignment of operations over the section between Karuizawa and Shinonoi to the third-sector Shinano Railway, both occurred on October 1, 1997, concurrently to the opening of the Nagano Shinkansen between Takasaki and Nagano stations. The abandoned section through the Usui Pass was famous for its steep 66.7‰ gradient.
When the Hokuriku Shinkansen extension to Kanazawa opens in March 2015, the portion of the Shinetsu Main Line between Nagano and Naoetsu will also be spun off to two third-sector railway operators, the Shinano Railway in Nagano Prefecture, and the Echigo Tokimeki Railway Company in Niigata Prefecture.
|Takasaki||0.0||Jōetsu Shinkansen, Nagano Shinkansen, Takasaki Line, Hachikō Line, Jōetsu Line, Ryōmō Line
Joshin Dentetsu Joshin Line
The Shinetsu Main Line runs roughly parallel to the route of the Hokuriku Shinkansen extension from Nagano to Kanazawa scheduled to open in March 2015. With the opening of the Hokuriku Shinkansen, control of local passenger services on the sections of the Shinetsu Main Line running through Nagano and Niigata prefectures will be transferred to the following two third-sector operating companies owned by the respective prefectures.
- Shinano Railway Line (37.3 km, Nagano to Myōkō-Kōgen)
- Echigo Tokimeki Railway Company Myōkō Haneuma Line (Myōkō-Kōgen to Naoetsu)
- Harada, Katsumasa (1981). "Technological independence and progress of standardization in the Japanese railways". JETRO. Retrieved January 2, 2009. "it was eventually decided to build the track at a steep grade of 66.7/1,000"
- "しなの鉄道（株）、えちごトキめき鉄道（株）、あいの風とやま鉄道（株）及びＩＲいしかわ鉄道（株）申請の第一種鉄道事業許可について" [Details of railway business approval for Shinano Railway, Echigo Tokimeki Railway Company, Ainokaze Toyama Railway, and IR Ishikawa Railway]. News release (in Japanese). Japan: Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism. 26 February 2014. Retrieved 22 March 2014.