Hokkaido Railway Company

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Hokkaido Railway Company
Native name
北海道旅客鉄道株式会社
Corporation
Industry Private railway
Predecessor Japanese National Railways (JNR)
Founded April 1, 1987 (privatization of JNR)
Headquarters Chūō-ku, Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan
Area served
Hokkaido
Products Kitaca (a rechargeable contactless smart card)
Services Passenger rail
Freight services
Intercity bus
Owner Japan Railway Construction, Transport and Technology Agency (100%)
Number of employees
7,970 (as of April 1, 2007)
Subsidiaries JR Hokkaido Bus
Website www2.jrhokkaido.co.jp/global/index.html

The Hokkaido Railway Company (北海道旅客鉄道株式会社?, Hokkaidō Ryokaku Tetsudō Kabushiki-gaisha) is one of the constituent companies of Japan Railways Group (JR Group), and is often referred to using its official abbreviation of JR Hokkaido (JR北海道?, Jeiāru Hokkaidō). It operates intercity rail services in Hokkaido, Japan. The company introduced Kitaca, a smart card ticketing system, from autumn 2008.

At the time of its privatization in 1987, JR Hokkaido operated 21 railway lines totalling 3,176.6 kilometres (1,973.8 mi) of narrow-gauge (1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)) track, as well as a ferry service to Aomori. Since then, that number has dwindled to just below 2,500 kilometres (1,600 mi), as unprofitable lines have been shut down or spun off (in the case of the Hokkaidō Chihoku Kōgen Railway). The ferry service has also been replaced by the Seikan Tunnel.

On 19 November 2016, JR Hokkaido's President announced plans to further rationalise its network by up to 1,237 km, or ~50% of the current network,[1] including closure of the remaining section of the Rumoi Main Line (the Rumoi - Mashike section closed on 4 December 2016), the Shin-Yubari - Yubari section of the Sekisho Line, the non-electrified section of the Sassho Line and the Nemuro Line between Furano and Kami-Ochiai Junction. Other lines including the Sekihoku Main Line, Senmo Main Line, the Naroyo - Wakkanai section of the Soya Line and Kushiro - Nemuro section of the Nemuro Line are proposed for conversion to Third Sector operation, but if local governments are not agreeable, such sections will also face closure.

Hokkaido Railway's headquarters are in Chūō-ku, Sapporo.[2]

History[edit]

Headquarters and branch offices[edit]

Headquarters building
  • Headquarters: 1-1-15 Kita-11-jō-Nishi, Chūō-ku, Sapporo
  • Branch offices:
    • Asahikawa branch office: 6-4152-2 Miyashita-dōri, Asahikawa
    • Hakodate branch office: 12-5 Wakamatsu-chō, Hakodate
    • Kushiro branch office: 5-14 Kita-ōdōri, Kushiro

Lines and key stations[edit]

KiHa 283 series DMU Super Hokuto
789-1000 series EMU Super Kamui

Shinkansen[edit]

Trunk lines[edit]

  1. ^ Most trains run between Sapporo and Oshamanbe.

Other lines[edit]

Under construction[edit]

Former lines[edit]

The company also operated the Seikan Ferry until 1988.

Former JNR lines closed before JR Hokkaido formation[edit]

These lines have been closed by JNR in Hokkaido before April 1, 1987.

References[edit]

External links[edit]