Chūō Line (Osaka)
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A Chūō Line 20 series EMU in August 2012
|System||Osaka Municipal Subway|
|Locale||Osaka and Higashiosaka|
|Opened||December 11, 1961|
|Owner||Osaka Municipal Transportation Bureau (Osakako — Nagata)
Osaka Port Transport System Co., Ltd. (Cosmosquare — Osakako)
|Operator(s)||Osaka Municipal Transportation Bureau|
|Line length||17.9 km (11.1 mi)|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in)|
|Electrification||750 V DC, third rail|
|Operating speed||70 km/h (43 mph)|
The Chūō Line (大阪市営地下鉄中央線 Ōsaka-shiei-chikatetsu Chūō-sen) is a rapid transit system in Osaka, Japan, operated by the Osaka Municipal Subway. The line runs east-westerly under Chūō Avenue (中央大通 Chūō Ōdōri). Its official name is Rapid Electric Tramway Line No. 4 (高速電気軌道第4号線), while the Osaka Municipal Transportation Bureau refers to it as Osaka City Rapid Railway Line No. 4 (大阪市高速鉄道第4号線), and in MLIT publications, it is written as Line No. 4 (Chūō Line) (4号線（中央線）). Station numbers are indicated by the letter C.
On July 1, 2005, Osaka City bought the Technoport Line (テクノポート線) from Cosmosquare to Osakakō of its subsidiary Osaka Port Transport System Co., Ltd. (大阪港トランスポートシステム), reducing fare to increase traffic. The section became a part of the Chūō Line, however is still owned by OTS.
The Chūō Line is the only line to connect to all other railway lines operated by the Osaka Municipal Transportation Bureau, including the Nankō Port Town Line.
- Above-ground section: west of Ōsakakō to west of Awaza; east of Aramoto (Keihanna Line)
- Block signalling: Automatic
- Train protection system: WS-ATC
- Cars per train: 6 (1984 – present)
- Maximum possible cars per train (platform length): 8
|Cosmosquare||コスモスクエア||0.0||Nankō Port Town Line (P09)||Suminoe-ku, Osaka|
|Bentenchō||弁天町||5.5||Osaka Loop Line|
|Kujō||九条||6.8||Hanshin Namba Line||Nishi-ku, Osaka|
|Awaza||阿波座||8.3||Sennichimae Line (S13)|
|10.1||Sakaisuji Line (K15)|
|Tanimachi Yonchōme||谷町四丁目||11.1||Tanimachi Line (T23)|
|Midoribashi||緑橋||13.6||Imazatosuji Line (I20)||Higashinari-ku, Osaka|
|Takaida||高井田||16.1||Osaka Higashi Line - Takaida-Chuo||Higashiosaka|
|↓ Through-service to/from Gakken Nara-Tomigaoka Station via the Keihanna Line ↓|
Osaka Municipal Subway
- 20 series (from 1984)
- 24 series (from 1991) (in green Osaka Municipal Transportation Bureau and blue Osaka Port Transport System (OTS) liveries)
The Osaka Municipal Subway trains are based at Morinomiya Depot, while the Kintetsu trains are based at Higashi-Hanazono and Tomigaoka Depots located on the Keihanna Line.
- 800 series (1961-1978)
- 900 series (1964-1978)
- 30 series (1967-1969, 1983-1995)
- 50 series (1969-1991)
The line (initially known as Line No. 4) opened on December 11, 1961, initially running between Ōsakakō and Bentenchō (this was the first elevated portion of the Osaka subway system); trains were initially composed of one car. Between 1964 and 1985, the line was expanded towards Nagata in four stages:
- October 31, 1964: Section between Bentenchō and Hommachi opens, with intermediate stations at Kujo and Awaza.
- September 30, 1967: The section between Tanimachi 4-chome and Morinomiya opens as a shuttle service with 2-car trains.
- July 29, 1968: The section of the shuttle service between Morinomiya and Fukaebashi opens.
- December 6, 1969: The section between Hommachi and Tanimachi 4-chome (including Sakaisuji-Hommachi) opens after construction delays; the shuttle service between Tanimachi 4-chome and Fukaebashi was absorbed into the line, which was now named the Chūō Line. 4-car trains begin operation.
- April 5, 1985: The section between Fukaebashi and Nagata opens. 6-car trains begin operation.
- October 1, 1986: Through service to Ikoma commences upon the opening of the Kintetsu Keihanna Line (then named the Higashiosaka Line).
On December 18, 1997, the OTS Technoport Line opened between Ōsakakō and Cosmosquare. This line was absorbed into the Chūō Line on July 1, 2005. The Keihanna Line was extended further into Nara when the extension to Gakken Nara-Tomigaoka opened on March 27, 2006.
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