Toei Subway

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Toei Subway
Native name都営地下鉄
Toei chikatetsu
LocaleTokyo, Japan
Transit typeRapid transit
Number of lines4[1]
Number of stations106[1]
Daily ridership2.85 million (FY2014)[1]
Began operation1960
Operator(s)Tokyo Metropolitan Bureau of Transportation
System length109.0 km (67.7 mi)[1]
Track gauge1,435 mm (4 ft 8+12 in) (Asakusa and Ōedo lines)
1,372 mm (4 ft 6 in) (Shinjuku line)
1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in) (Mita line)
Electrification1,500 V DC from overhead catenary[1]

The Toei Subway (都営地下鉄, Toei chikatetsu, lit.'metropolis-operated subway'[2]) is one of two subway systems in Tokyo, the other being Tokyo Metro. The Toei Subway lines were originally licensed to the Teito Rapid Transit Authority (the predecessor of Tokyo Metro) but were constructed by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government following transfers of the licenses for each line. The subway has run at a financial loss for most of its history due to high construction expenses, particularly for the Oedo Line. However, it reported its first net profit of ¥3.13bn in FY2006. The Toei Subway is operated by the Tokyo Metropolitan Bureau of Transportation.

Tokyo Metro and Toei trains form completely separate networks. While users of prepaid rail passes can freely interchange between the two networks, regular ticket holders must purchase a second ticket, or a special transfer ticket, to change from a Toei line to a Tokyo Metro line and vice versa. The sole exceptions are on the segment of the Toei Mita Line between Meguro and Shirokane-Takanawa, where the platforms are shared with the Tokyo Metro Namboku Line, and at Kudanshita on the Shinjuku Line, where the platform is shared with the Tokyo Metro Hanzomon Line. At these stations, it is possible to change between the networks without passing through a ticket gate.


Apart from its own logo, a stylized ginkgo leaf used as the symbol of the Tokyo Metropolis, Toei Subway shares a design language in common with Tokyo Metro. Lines are indicated by a letter in Futura Bold on a white background inside a roundel in the line color, with signs indicating stations adding the station number as well. Line colors and letter-designations are complementary with Tokyo Metro's, with none overlapping (e.g., the Mita Line's letter-designation is “I”, rather than “M”, which is used by the Tokyo Metro Marunouchi Line). Informational signage is also designed identically, with platform-level station placards differing only in the placement of the bands in the line color: Toei Subway has two thin bands at the top and bottom, while Tokyo Metro has one wider band at the bottom (or, in the case of long, narrow placards, in a continuous band extending to the left and right along the wall itself).


The Toei Subway is made up of four lines operating on 109.0 kilometers (67.7 mi) of route.[1]

Color Sign NumberN Line Japanese Route Stations[1] Length[1] Train Length Opened Gauge[1]
Rose Line 1 Asakusa Line 浅草線 Nishi-Magome to Oshiage 20 18.3 km (11.4 mi) 8 cars 1960 1,435 mm (4 ft 8+12 in)
Blue Line 6 Mita Line 三田線 Meguro to Nishi-Takashimadaira 27 26.5 km (16.5 mi) 6 cars (to be expanded to 8 cars[3]) 1968 1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)
Leaf Line 10 Shinjuku Line 新宿線 Shinjuku to Moto-Yawata 21 23.5 km (14.6 mi) 8 or 10 cars 1978 1,372 mm (4 ft 6 in)
Magenta Line 12 Ōedo Line 大江戸線 Hikarigaoka to Tochōmae via Tochōmae, Roppongi and Ryogoku 38 40.7 km (25.3 mi) 8 cars 1991 1,435 mm (4 ft 8+12 in)
Total 106 109.0 km (67.7 mi)  

Two of the lines have different colors for their station signs: Asakusa (Vermilion A) and Shinjuku (Lime S). The Ōedo Line formerly had a darker magenta (O) as its designated color.

Through services to other lines[edit]

The different gauges of the Toei lines arose in part due to the need to accommodate through services with private suburban railway lines. Through services currently in regular operation include:

Line Through Lines
A Asakusa KK Keikyu Kurihama Line and KK Keikyu Airport Line both via the KK Keikyu Main Line (Sengakuji to Haneda Airport Domestic Terminal (Tokyo International Airport) or Misakiguchi)
KS Keisei Oshiage Line, KS Keisei Main Line, KS Narita Sky Access Line, HS Hokuso Line, KS Keisei Higashi-Narita Line and SR Shibayama Railway Line (Oshiage to Narita Airport Terminal 1, Inba-Nihon-Idai or Shibayama-Chiyoda)
I Mita MG Tōkyū Meguro Line (Meguro to Hiyoshi), then SH Tōkyū Shin-Yokohama Line (Hiyoshi to Shin-Yokohama), then Sōtetsu Shin-Yokohama Line (Shin-Yokohama to Nishiya), then Sōtetsu Main Line (Nishiya to Futamata-gawa to Ebina) or Sōtetsu Izumino Line (Futamata-gawa to Shōnandai)
S Shinjuku KO Keio New Line and KO Keio Sagamihara Line both via the KO Keiō Line (Shinjuku to Hashimoto or Takaosanguchi)

According to the company, an average of 2.34 million people used the company's four subway routes each day in 2008. The company made a profit of ¥12.2 billion in 2009.[4]


There are a total of 99 unique stations (i.e., counting stations served by multiple lines only once) on the Toei Subway network, or 106 total stations if each station on each line counts as one station.[1] Almost all stations are located within the 23 special wards, with many located in areas not served by the complementary Tokyo Metro network.

Network map[edit]


Rolling stock[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j 東京都交通局ホーム - 経営情報 - 交通局の概要 - 都営地下鉄 [Tokyo Metropolitan Bureau of Transportation Home - Management Information - Overview of the Department of Transportation - Toei Subway] (in Japanese). 東京都交通局 [Tokyo Metropolitan Bureau of Transportation]. April 1, 2015. Retrieved 2016-01-17.
  2. ^ 日本国語大辞典,デジタル大辞泉, 精選版. "都営(とえい)とは? 意味や使い方". コトバンク (in Japanese).
  3. ^ 鉄道チャンネル. "都営三田線に新型「6500形」 初の8両編成で令和4年度営業投入 6300形を置き換え | 鉄道ニュース". 鉄道チャンネル (in Japanese). Retrieved 2022-03-06.
  4. ^ Martin, Alex, "Ubiquitous Tokyo subways moving the daily masses", Japan Times, August 3, 2010, p. 3.