The Kaikyō Line (海峡線? Kaikyō-sen) is an 87.8-kilometer long railway line operated mainly by the Hokkaido Railway Company (JR Hokkaido). The line connects Naka-Oguni Station in Sotogahama, Aomori, through the Seikan Tunnel between Honshu and Hokkaido, to Kikonai Station in Kikonai, Hokkaido. Two stations on the Tsugaru-Kaikyō Line, Tappi-Kaitei Station and Yoshioka-Kaitei Station (both closed since 2014), were inside the tunnel.
The approximately 82 km section of concrete-slab track-bed was built to accommodate the Hokkaido Shinkansen, and is dual gauge, with both narrow (national standard) 1,067 mm gauge and 1,435 mm gauge track. As all regular passenger services are Shinkansen, the Kaikyō Line is normally used only by freight trains.
The line was originally electrified at 20 kV AC (50 Hz) and was changed in 2016 to the Shinkansen-standard 25 kV AC (50 Hz). For operation on the line, JR Freight introduced Class EH800 dual-voltage locomotive.
- Naka-Oguni Station
- Okutsugaru-Imabetsu Station (Shinkansen station with facilities for freight trains on the Kaikyō Line)
- Tappi-Kaitei Station (closed 2014)
- Yoshioka-Kaitei Station (closed 2014)
- Shiriuchi Station (closed 2014)
- Kikonai Station
The line was opened on 13 March 1988 in conjunction with the opening of the Seikan Tunnel. Originally the line ran both freight and passenger trains; the latter included daytime limited express Hakuchō and night train Hokutosei.
Three of the stations on the Kaikyō Line, Tappi-Kaitei, Yoshioka-Kaitei, and Shiriuchi, were closed on 15 March 2014 due to construction work connected with the Hokkaido Shinkansen, which opened on 26 March 2016. From that time, all passenger services through the line were discontinued.
This article incorporates material from the corresponding article in the Japanese Wikipedia
- "青函トンネル：新幹線対応 電圧アップ２万５０００Ｖに" [Seikan Tunnel voltage raised to 25000 volts for Shinkansen compatibility]. Mainichi Shimbun (in Japanese). The Mainichi Newspapers. 22 March 2016. Archived from the original on 22 March 2016. Retrieved 3 April 2016.
- 駅の営業終了について [Station closure details] (pdf). News release (in Japanese). Japan: Hokkaido Railway Company. 13 September 2013. Retrieved 18 September 2013.