Tobu Railway

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"Tobu" redirects here. For the producer, see Tobu (producer).
Tobu Railway Co., Ltd.
Native name
東武鉄道株式会社
kabushiki kaisha
Traded as TYO: 9001
Genre Rail transport
Founded November 1897
Founder Michinari Suenobu
Rokuro Hara
Headquarters 2-18-12 Oshiage, Sumida-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Area served
Tokyo, Saitama, Chiba, Gunma, Tochigi
Key people
Nezu Kaichirō
Services Passenger railway
Total assets ¥1.3 trillion
Owner Yoshizumi Nezu (from 1999)
Number of employees
4,659 (As of March 2010)
Website www.tobu.co.jp
Old Tobu Railway logo used until July 2011

Tobu Railway Co., Ltd. (東武鉄道株式会社, Tōbu Tetsudō Kabushiki-gaisha?) is a Japanese commuter railway company in the Greater Tokyo Area as well as an intercity and regional operator in the Kantō region. Excluding the Japan Railways Group companies, Tobu's 463.3 km rail system is the second longest in Japan after Kintetsu. It serves large portions of Saitama Prefecture, Gunma Prefecture and Tochigi Prefecture, as well as northern Tokyo and western Chiba Prefecture.

The Tobu corporate group is also engaged in road transportation (bus/taxi), real estate, and retail. It is the largest investor in the Tokyo Skytree, the tallest structure in Japan. The company is a member of the Mizuho keiretsu.[citation needed]

The name "Tobu" is formed from the kanji for east (東) and Musashi (武蔵), the initial area served.

History[edit]

Tobu is one of the oldest railway companies in Japan. It was established in November 1897 and began operation between Kita-Senju and Kuki in August 1899. The Tojo Railway was founded in 1911 as a separate company, but shared its president and head office with Tobu.[1]

Tobu was the first railway in the Kanto region to adopt quadruple tracks, on the Kita-Senju to Takenotsuka sector in 1974. The Tobu Dobutsu Koen (Tobu Animal Park) opened in 1981.[2]

Railway network[edit]

Diagram of the Tobu network, showing main lines to right and Tojo Lines to lower left

Tobu has two isolated networks which are connected by the Chichibu Railway for ferrying of its rolling stock.

The Tobu Main Line network has a tree topology starting at Asakusa Station in Tokyo, with the Isesaki line as the trunk, and the Tobu Kameido Line, Daishi Line, Tobu Urban Park Line, Tobu Sano Line, Koizumi Line, Tōbu Kiryū Line, and Nikkō Line forming the branches, with further branches into the Tobu Utsunomiya Line and Tobu Kinugawa Lines. It offers surcharged, seat-reserved limited express services from Tokyo to Nikkō and Kinugawa.

The Tojo Line runs northwest from Ikebukuro Station in Tokyo to central and western Saitama Prefecture. A branch, the Ogose Line, runs to Ogose from Sakado Station.

Tobu's terminals in Tokyo are at Asakusa Station (Main Line express services), Oshiage Station (most other Main Line services) and Ikebukuro Station (Tojo Line). The Skytree and Isesaki Lines interoperate with the Tokyo Metro Hibiya Line to serve central Tokyo, while the Tojo Line interoperates with the Tokyo Metro Fukutoshin Line, Tokyu Toyoko Line and Minatomirai Line to serve central and southwest Tokyo and Kanagawa Prefecture.

Main Lines[edit]

Name Symbol Stations Length (km)
Skytree Line Tobu Skytree Line (TS) symbol.svg AsakusaTōbu-Dōbutsu-Kōen 41.0
Kameido Line HikifuneKameido 3.4
Daishi Line NishiaraiDaishimae 1.0
Isesaki Line Tobu Isesaki Line (TI) symbol.svg Tōbu-Dōbutsu-KōenIsesaki 75.1
Sano Line TatebayashiKuzū 22.1
Koizumi Line TatebayashiNishi-Koizumi, ŌtaHigashi-Koizumi 12.0
Kiryū Line ŌtaAkagi 20.3
Nikkō Line Tobu Nikko Line (TN) symbol.svg Tōbu-Dōbutsu-KōenTōbu Nikkō 94.5
Utsunomiya Line Shin-TochigiTōbu Utsunomiya 24.3
Kinugawa Line Shimo-ImaichiShin-Fujiwara 16.2
Urban Park Line (Formerly Noda Line) Tobu Noda Line (TD) symbol.svg ŌmiyaKasukabeFunabashi 62.7

Tobu Tojo Lines[edit]

Name Symbol Stations Length (km)
Tojo Line Tobu Tojo Line (TJ) symbol.svg IkebukuroYorii 75.0
Ogose Line SakadoOgose 10.9

Rolling stock[edit]

As of 1 April 2016, Tobu Railway operates a fleet of 1,890 electric multiple unit (EMU) vehicles, the third largest fleet for a private railway operator in Japan after Tokyo Metro (2,728 vehicles) and Kintetsu (1,905).[3]

Express EMUs[edit]

Eight new three-car 500 series EMU trains were introduced on limited express services on lines from Asakusa in 21 April 2017.[4]

Commuter EMUs[edit]

Steam locomotive[edit]

Tobu plans to operate steam-hauled tourist services on the Kinugawa Line from 10 August 2017 using JNR Class C11 steam locomotive C11 207 loaned from JR Hokkaido together with JNR Class DE10 diesel locomotive DE10 1099 purchased from JR East, a fleet of six 12 and 14 series coaches purchased from JR Shikoku, and two Yo 8000 brake vans purchased from JR Freight and JR East.[6]

Withdrawn types[edit]

Express EMUs[edit]

Commuter EMUs[edit]

DMUs[edit]

Steam locomotives[edit]

  • Tobu B1 Class 4-4-0 (1898)

References[edit]

  • Terada, Hirokazu (July 2002). データブック日本の私鉄 [Databook: Japan's Private Railways]. Japan: Neko Publishing. pp. 56–57. ISBN 4-87366-874-3. 
  1. ^ "明治28年~45年". Tobu Railway. Retrieved 28 April 2015. 
  2. ^ "昭和41年~63年". Tobu Railway. Retrieved 28 April 2015. 
  3. ^ 私鉄車両編成表 2016 [Private Railway Rolling Stock Formations - 2016] (in Japanese). Japan: Kotsu Shimbunsha. 25 July 2016. p. 213-214. ISBN 978-4-330-70116-5. 
  4. ^ 2017年4月21日(金)ダイヤ改正を実施! [Revised timetable to be introduced on Friday 21 April 2017] (PDF). News release (in Japanese). Japan: Tobu Railway. 18 January 2017. Archived from the original (pdf) on 19 January 2017. Retrieved 19 January 2017. 
  5. ^ 東武鉄道、新型70000系公開 沿線風景をデザイン、6月から運転 [Tobu Railway shows off new 70000 series, entering service from June 2017, featuring lineside scenery designs] (in Japanese). Japan: The Saitama Shimbun. 13 April 2017. Archived from the original on 13 April 2017. Retrieved 13 April 2017. 
  6. ^ 東武鬼怒川線で復活するSL「大樹」の営業運転開始日を2017年8月10日(木)に決定! ["Taiju" steam locomotive on Tobu Kinugawa Line to enter service on Thursday 10 August 2017] (PDF). News release (in Japanese). Japan: Tobu Railway. 18 January 2017. Archived from the original (pdf) on 19 January 2017. Retrieved 19 January 2017. 

External links[edit]