Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line

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Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line
東京湾アクアライン
Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line (bridge section)
Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line (bridge section)
Other name(s) Trans-Tokyo Bay Highway
Carries 4 lanes of National Route 409[1]
Crosses Tokyo Bay
Locale
Design
Total length
  • bridge: 4,384 metres (14,383 ft)[2]
  • tunnel: 9,600 metres (31,496 ft)
Width 22.9 metres (75 ft)[2]
Longest span 240 metres (787 ft)[3]
Piers in water 42[2]
Clearance below 29 metres (95 ft)[2]
Fabrication by
  • bridge: Yokogawa Bridge Corp.[4] and JFE Engineering[5]
  • tunnel:
Construction begin 1989
Construction cost ¥1.4 trillion
Opened 18 December 1997 (1997-12-18)
Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line is located in Tokyo Bay and Bōsō Peninsula
Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line
Location within Tokyo Bay and Bōsō Peninsula
Coordinates 35°27′47″N 139°52′31″E / 35.46306°N 139.87528°E / 35.46306; 139.87528Coordinates: 35°27′47″N 139°52′31″E / 35.46306°N 139.87528°E / 35.46306; 139.87528
Tokyo Bay Tunnel
Umihotaru, where bridge transitions to tunnel
Umihotaru, where bridge transitions to tunnel
Overview
Status
  • 2 in use
  • 1 planned
Start Umihotaru Island
End Ukishima, Kawasaki, Kanagawa
Technical
Construction Taisei[6]
Number of lanes 2 (unidirectional) in each of 2 tunnels
Highest elevation sea level
Lowest elevation −45 metres (−148 ft)
Width
  • 14.1 metres (46 ft) OD
  • 11.9 metres (39 ft) ID
  • 10.5 metres (34 ft) roadway
Grade 4%[7]
(video) Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line and Umihotaru Parking Lot seen from the sky, 2015.

The Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line (東京湾アクアライン Tōkyō-wan Akua-rain[8]?), also known as the Trans-Tokyo Bay Highway, is a bridge–tunnel combination across Tokyo Bay in Japan. It connects the city of Kawasaki in Kanagawa Prefecture with the city of Kisarazu in Chiba Prefecture, and forms part of National Route 409. With an overall length of 14 km, it includes a 4.4 km bridge and 9.6 km tunnel underneath the bay—the fourth-longest underwater tunnel in the world.[9]

Overview[edit]

Umihotaru
The Tower of Wind, 2015

At the bridge–tunnel crossover point, there is an artificial island called Umihotaru (海ほたる Umi-hotaru?, literally meaning "sea firefly") with a rest area consisting of restaurants, shops and amusement facilities. Air is supplied to the tunnel by a distinctive tower in the middle of the tunnel, called the Kaze no Tō (風の塔, "the tower of wind"), which uses the bay's almost-constant winds as a power source.

The road opened on December 18, 1997 after 23 years of planning and 9 years of construction at a cost of 1.44 trillion yen (11.2 billion USD at the time of opening).

The Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line reduced the drive between Chiba and Kanagawa, two important industrial regions, from 90 to 15 minutes,[10] and also contributed to cutting the travel time to the sea leisure area in the southern part of the Bōsō Peninsula from Tokyo and Kanagawa. Before the tunnel opened, one had to drive around about 100 km along the shores of Tokyo Bay and pass through downtown Tokyo.

One goal expressed during the planning of the Aqua-Line was to reduce the traffic through downtown Tokyo, but as the highway toll is quite high, the reduction in Tokyo traffic has not been as great as expected.

Many highway bus services now use the Tokyo Bay Aqua-Line, including lines from Tokyo Station, Yokohama Station and Haneda Airport to Kisarazu, Kimitsu, Kamogawa, Katsuura and Tateyama.

Tolls[edit]

The cash toll for a single trip on the Aqua-Line is ¥3000 for ordinary-size cars (¥2400 for kei cars); however, using the ETC (electronic toll collection) system, the fare is ¥2320 (¥1860 for kei cars). The ETC toll is reduced to ¥1000 on Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays. In general, tolls for usage of the Aqua-Line in either direction are collected at the mainline toll plaza on the Kisarazu end.

Toll table of Tokyo-bay Aqua Line
(Kawasaki-Ukishima Junction – Kisarazu-Kaneda Interchange)
Type of car Toll ETC Aqua-Line
Special discount
ETC Pilot Test discount
(from July2009)
Normal cars 3,000JPY 2,320JPY 800JPY
Midsize cars 3,600JPY 2,780JPY 960JPY
Large cars 4,950JPY 3,830JPY 1,320JPY
Specific large cars 8,250JPY 6,380JPY 2,200JPY
Kei-cars and motorcycles 2,400JPY 1,860JPY 640JPY

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Developments of transportation and industries, do bring a more comfortable life to every body.". Tokyo wan Aqua-line. 1998. Archived from the original on 3 December 1998. Retrieved 6 March 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c d Shioi, Y.; Nakamura, S. (1994). "8: Design Concept of the Trans-Tokyo Bay Bridge". In Pritchard, B.P. Continuous and Integral Bridges. London: E & FN Spon. pp. 75–84. ISBN 0-419-19030-9. Retrieved 8 March 2015. 
  3. ^ Nagai, Masatsugu; Okui, Yoshiaki; Kawai, Yutaka; Yamamoto, Masaaki; Saito, Kimio (2014). "23: Bridge Engineering in Japan". In Chen, Wai-Fah; Duan, Lian. Handbook of International Bridge Engineering. Boca Raton: CRC Press. p. 1048. ISBN 978-1-4398-1030-9. Retrieved 6 March 2015. 
  4. ^ "Steel Bridges: Structures in Japan". Yokogawa Bridge Corporation. Retrieved 6 March 2015. 
  5. ^ "Girder bridges". JFE Engineering Corporation. Retrieved 6 March 2015. 
  6. ^ "Taisei Corporation's Journey over 140 Years". Taisei Corporation. 2014. Retrieved 8 March 2015. 
  7. ^ Funasaki, Tsuneyoshi; Yamada, Norio; Izumi, Yasutaka; Miki, Keizou (1998). "Construction of Trans-Tokyo Bay Highway". IABSE Reports 78: 43–48. doi:10.5169/seals-59019. 
  8. ^ Katakana-shingo-jiten, Gakken 2003, ISBN 4-05-301351-8
  9. ^ Hotta, Kenji (2002). "4: Tokyo Bay Reformation". In Chen, Jiyu; Eisma, Doeke; Hotta, Kenji et al. Engineered Coasts. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic. pp. 94–95. ISBN 1-4020-0521-0. Retrieved 6 March 2015. 
  10. ^ http://www.tollroadsnews.com/node/2126

External links[edit]