Shin'etsu Main Line

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Shinetsu Main Line
Overview
Locale Gunma, Nagano, Niigata prefectures
Termini Takasaki - Yokokawa
Shinonoi - Niigata
Operation
Operator(s) JR East
Technical
Track gauge 1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)
Electrification 1,500 V DC overhead catenary
Route map
Map of Shinetsu Main Line.svg

Map Legend
Red: Shinetsu Main Line
Blue: Shinano Railway Line

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.[1]

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.[2]

Stations[edit]

Takasaki–Yokokawa[edit]

Station Distance
(km)
Connections Location
Takasaki 0.0 Jōetsu Shinkansen, Nagano Shinkansen, Takasaki Line, Hachikō Line, Jōetsu Line, Ryōmō Line
Joshin Dentetsu Joshin Line
Takasaki Gunma
Prefecture
Kita-Takasaki 2.4  
Gumma-Yawata 6.4  
Annaka 10.6   Annaka
Isobe 17.6  
Matsuida 22.7  
Nishi-Matsuida 23.9  
Yokokawa 29.7  

Shinonoi–Niigata[edit]

Station Distance
(km)
Connections Location
Shinonoi 0.0 Shinonoi Line,
Shinano Railway Line
Nagano Nagano
Prefecture
Imai 2.1  
Kawanakajima 4.3  
Amori 6.4  
Nagano 9.3 Nagano Shinkansen
Nagano Electric Railway
Kita-Nagano 13.2  
Sansai 16.1  
Toyono 20.1 Iiyama Line
Mure 27.9   Iizuna
Furuma 34.4   Shinano
Kurohime 38.2  
Myōkō-Kōgen 46.6   Myōkō Niigata
Prefecture
Sekiyama 53.0  
Nihongi 61.3   Jōetsu
Arai 67.6   Myōkō
Kita-Arai 70.5  
Wakinoda 73.9   Jōetsu
Minami-Takada 75.6  
Takada 77.6  
Kasugayama 81.5  
Naoetsu 84.3 Hokuriku Main Line
Kuroi 87.0  
Saigata 91.4 Hokuhoku Line
Dosokohama 93.7  
Katamachi 95.5  
Jōgehama 98.3  
Kakizaki 101.9  
Yoneyama 107.8   Kashiwazaki
Kasashima 111.7  
Ōmigawa 113.9  
Kujiranami 116.9  
Kashiwazaki 120.6 Echigo Line
Ibarame 123.6  
Yasuda 126.5  
Kitajō 129.1  
Echigo-Hirota 132.4  
Nagatori 135.1  
Tsukayama 140.1   Nagaoka
Echigo-Iwatsuka 144.8  
Raikōji 147.6  
Maekawa 151.7  
Miyauchi 154.3 Jōetsu Line
Minami-Nagaoka Freight Terminal 155.7  
Nagaoka 157.3 Jōetsu Shinkansen
Kita-Nagaoka 159.8  
Oshikiri 164.2  
Mitsuke 168.7   Mitsuke
Obiori 172.8   Sanjō
Tōkōji 175.4  
Sanjō 178.9  
Higashi-Sanjō 180.5 Yahiko Line
Honai 184.3  
Kamo 188.1   Kamo
Hanyūda 192.2   Tagami
Tagami 195.4  
Yashiroda 199.1   Akiha-ku, Niigata
Furutsu 202.2  
Niitsu 205.4 Uetsu Main Line, Banetsu West Line
Satsukino 206.9  
Ogikawa 209.2  
Kameda 214.1   Kōnan-ku, Niigata
Echigo-Ishiyama 216.5   Higashi-ku, Niigata
Kaminuttari Junction (218.7)   Chūō-ku, Niigata
Niigata 220.6 Jōetsu Shinkansen, Hakushin Line, Echigo Line

Future developments[edit]

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.[2]

References[edit]