Uchibō Line

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‹See Tfm›     Uchibō Line
JR East 255 Limited Express Sazanami.jpg
A 255 series EMU on a Sazanami limited express service
Overview
Type Regional rail
Locale Chiba Prefecture
Termini Soga
Awa-Kamogawa
Stations 30
Operation
Opening 1912
Operator(s) JR East
Depot(s) Chiba
Technical
Line length 119.4 km (74.2 mi)
Track gauge 1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)
Operating speed 110 km/h (70 mph)
Route map
鉄道路線図 JR内房線.svg

The Uchibō Line (内房線 Uchibō-sen?) is a railway line operated by the East Japan Railway Company (JR East) adjacent to Tokyo Bay, paralleling the western (i.e., inner) shore of the Bōsō Peninsula. It connects Soga Station in the city of Chiba to Awa-Kamogawa Station in the city of Kamogawa, passing through the municipalities of Chiba, Ichihara, Sodegaura, Kisarazu, Kimitsu, Futtsu, Kyonan, Tateyama, and Minamibōsō. The line is connected at both ends to the Sotobō Line. The name of the Uchibō Line in the Japanese language is formed from two kanji characters. The first, , means "inner" and the second, is the first character of the Bōsō. The name of the line thus refers to its location along the inner part of the Bōsō Peninsula in relation to the Tokyo Metropolitan Area, as opposed to the Sotobō Line, "outer Bōsō" which is on the opposite side of the peninsula. South of Kimitsu is single track, and north of Kimitsu is double track.

Station list[edit]

  • Regular trains are local and stop at every station.
  • See Limited Express Sazanami article also.
Line name Station Japanese Distance Rapid/ Commuter Rapid Connecting lines Location
Sotobō Line Chiba 千葉 3.8 O Sōbu Main Line
Chiba Urban Monorail Line 1, Line 2
Keisei Chiba Line (Keisei Chiba)
Chūō-ku, Chiba
Hon-Chiba 本千葉 2.4 O  
Soga 蘇我 0.0 O Sotobō Line

Keiyō Line

Uchibō Line
Hamano 浜野 3.4 O  
Yawatajuku 八幡宿 5.6 O   Ichihara
Goi 五井 9.3 O Kominato Railway Kominato Line
Anegasaki 姉ケ崎 15.1 O  
Nagaura 長浦 20.5 O   Sodegaura
Sodegaura 袖ケ浦 24.4 O  
Iwane 巌根 27.5   Kisarazu
Kisarazu 木更津 31.3 O Kururi Line
Kimitsu 君津 38.3 O   Kimitsu
Aohori 青堀 42.0 O   Futtsu
Ōnuki 大貫 46.6 O  
Sanukimachi 佐貫町 50.7 O  
Kazusa-Minato 上総湊 55.1 O  
Takeoka 竹岡 60.2    
Hamakanaya 浜金谷 64.0    
Hota 保田 67.5     Kyonan, Awa District
Awa-Katsuyama 安房勝山 70.8    
Iwai 岩井 73.7     Minami-Bōsō
Tomiura 富浦 79.8    
Nako-Funakata 那古船形 82.1     Tateyama
Tateyama 館山 85.9    
Kokonoe 九重 91.7    
Chikura 千倉 96.6     Minami-Bōsō
Chitose 千歳 98.6    
Minamihara 南三原 102.2    
Wadaura 和田浦 106.8    
Emi 江見 111.4     Kamogawa
Futomi 太海 116.0    
Awa-Kamogawa 安房鴨川 119.4   Sotobō Line

Operation[edit]

The Uchibō Line operates local service with trains generally originating and terminating at Chiba Station. Trains headed directly for Tokyo Station merge with the Sotobō Line between Soga and Chiba Stations, and with the Sōbu Main Line between Chiba and Tokyo, while express and commuter trains merge with the Keiyō Line from Soga station.

Local trains[edit]

A 209 series EMU on a "Local" service, July 2010

Daytime service from Chiba to Kisarazu and Kimitsu (sometimes to Kazusa-Minato) is generally 3 round trips per hour, from Chiba to Awa-Kamogawa and Tateyama (sometimes to Chikura) is 1 round trip per hour.

Formerly, the Uchibō and Sotobō lines were connected by trains running from Hota to Sotobō Line Kazusa-Ichinomiya, and from Kazusa-Ichinomiya station to Chiba Station via Tateyama/Kisarazu Stations, but currently no trains pass Awa-Kamogawa Station in either direction.

All-stations "Local" services use 209-2000/2100 series and 211 series EMUs based at Makuhari Depot.

Rapid service[edit]

An E217 series EMU on a "Rapid" service, December 2013
  • Direct connection to Sōbu Line Rapid (Rapid)
    Trains leaving north from Kimitsu station connect directly to the Sōbu Line Rapid. Since the October 2004 timetable revision, all trains now stop at Nagaura and Sodegaura stations.
  • Direct connection to Keiyō Line (Rapid/Commuter Rapid)
    Commuter Rapid and Rapid service trains connecting to the Keiyō Line extend to Kimitsu station in the morning and evening, with three trains inbound in the morning, and five outbound trains in the evening. One of the inbound morning trains originates from Kazusa-Minato.

Rolling stock[edit]

Trains connecting to the Yokosuka LineSōbu Line Rapid use E217 series trains with green cars based at Kamakura and Makuhari depots.

Limited express trains[edit]

E257-500 series EMU on a Sazanami service, October 2006

The limited express train Sazanami runs from Tokyo Station to Kimitsu and Tateyama stations (and Chikura station during busy periods). The limited express View Sazanami formerly ran on the Uchibō Line as well, but it was merged with the Sazanami following the timetable revision on December 10, 2005. The limited express Shinjuku Sazanami runs from Shinjuku to Chikura on weekends.

Rolling stock[edit]

History[edit]

The Uchibō line began operation in 1912, and was originally known as the Kisarazu Line (木更津線?). It operated from Soga Station to Anegasaki Station in Ichihara. Several extensions were built over the next few years, and in 1919 it reached Awa-Hōjō (present day Tateyama). At this time it was renamed the Hōjō Line (北条線?). By 1925 it had been extended to its present day terminus, Awa-Kamogawa Station.

In 1929, the Hōjō Line was incorporated into the Bōsō Line. However, in 1933, the original section between Soga and Awa-Kamogawa Stations again became its own line, this time renamed the Bōsō West Line (房総西線?), and in 1972 it received its current name.

The Soga - Kimitsu section was duplicated between 1964 and 1971, and the entire line was electrified between 1968 and 1971. Individual section dates as given in the Timeline section below.

Timeline[edit]

  • March 28, 1912 – Kisarazu Line (Soga to Anegasaki) begins operation
  • August 21, 1912 – Extended from Anegasaki to Kisarazu
  • January 15, 1915 – Extended from Kisarazu to Kazusa-Minato
  • October 11, 1916 – Extended from Kazusa-Minato to Hamakanaya
  • August 1, 1917 – Extended from Hamakanaya to Awa-Katsuyama
  • August 10, 1918 – Extended from Awa-Katsuyama to Nako-Funakata
  • May 24, 1919 – Extended from Nako-Funakata to Awa-Hōjō; renamed Hōjō Line
  • June 1, 1921 – Extended from Awa-Hōjō to Minamihara
  • December 20, 1922 – Extended from Minamihara to Emi
  • July 25, 1924 – Extended from Emi to Futomi
  • July 11, 1925 – Extended from Futomi to Awa-Kamogawa
  • June 16, 1926 – Takeoka station opened
  • May 20, 1927 – Chitose railyard opened
  • August 15, 1929 – Bōsō line extended to Awa-Kamogawa; Hōjō Line incorporated into Bōsō Line
  • August 1, 1930 – Chitose railyard is upgraded to a station
  • April 1, 1933 – Bōsō line from Soga to Awa-Kamogawa (the run of the former Hōjō Line) is renamed Bōsō West Line
  • November 20, 1941 – Iwane station opened
  • March 1, 1946 – Awa-Hōjō station renamed Tateyama Station
  • January 10, 1947 – Nagaura station opened
  • April 10, 1956 – Shūsai station renamed Kimitsu Station
  • July 1, 1964 – Double-track section built between Soga and Hamano
  • September 20, 1964 – Double track extended from Hamano to Yawatajuku
  • July 4, 1965 – Double track extended from Yawatajuku to Goi
  • May 26, 1968 – Double track extended from Goi to Nagaura
  • July 13, 1968 – Electric wires extended from Chiba station, past Sogo, extending to Kisarazu
  • March 20, 1969 – Double track extended from Nagaura to Naraba
  • July 10, 1969 – 135 C57-105 steam engines removed from service
  • July 11, 1969 – Electric wires extended from Kisarazu to Chikura
  • March 18, 1970 – Double track extended from Naraba to Kisarazu
  • March 24, 1970 – Double track extended from Kisarazu to Kimitsu
  • July 1, 1971 – Electric wires extended from Chikura to Awa-Kamogawa
  • July 15, 1972 – Renamed Uchibō Line
  • March 31, 1974 – Naraba station renamed Sodegaura
  • November 15, 1982 – Freight service between Kisarazu and Awa-Kamogawa discontinued
  • April 1, 1987 – Acquired by East Japan Railway Company following the division and privatization of JNR initiated by prime minister Yasuhiro Nakasone; Japan Freight Railway Company becomes a second class railway enterprise between Soga and Kisarazu
  • November 1, 1996 – Japan Freight Railway Company second class enterprise between Soga and Kisarazu is discontinued
  • February 4, 2001 – ATS-P usage implemented between Chiba and Iwane
  • October 1, 2009 - 209-2000/2100 series EMUs are introduced on local services

References[edit]

This article incorporates material from the corresponding article in the Japanese Wikipedia.

External links[edit]

Media related to Uchibō Line at Wikimedia Commons