In yesterday’s post I pondered out loud about whether or not the line I commute on is the busiest one in the Osaka area or not, so I decided to look for some statistics. With surprisingly little effort, I found the data for last year, 2007, for Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya areas.
The degree of crowding was averaged over one hour over all the trains passing through the segment between two stations, and I presume also averaged over the year. As a baseline, 100% is full, not just all seats taken, but also the straps and a few people around the doors. 150% is touching shoulders, but can still easily read a newspaper. 180% is bodies touching, but can just manage to read. 200% is just a bit too close, but you can still just manage a magazine or book. 250% is sardines.
So without further ado, here they are for the main lines around each of the cities:
Line Stations Overcrowding
Tobu Isesaki Line Kosuge to Kita-senju 145%
Tobu Tojo Line Kita-ikebukuro to Ikebukuro 136%
Seibu Ikebukuro Line Shiinamachi to Ikebukuro 158%
Seibu Shinjuku Line Shita-ochiai to Takadanobaba 160%
Keisei Oshiage Line Hikifune to Oshiage 160%
Keisei Main Line Daijingu-shita to Keisei-funabashi 151%
Keio Line Shimo-takaido to Meidaimae 169%
Keio Inokashira Line Shinsen to Shibuya 146%
Odakyu Odawara Line Setagaya-daita to Shimo-kitazawa 192%
Tokyu Toyoko Line Yutenji to Naka-meguro 172%
Tokyu Den-en-toshi Line Ikejiri-Ohashi to Shibuya 198%
Keikyu Main Line Tobe to Yokohama 153%
Toei Asakusa Line Honjo-azumabashi to Asakusa 133%
Toei Mita Line Nishi-sugamo to Sugamo 164%
Toei Shinjuku Line Nishi-ojima to Sumiyoshi 173%
Tokyo Metro Hibaya Line Minowa to Iriya 164%
Tokyo Metro Ginza Line Asasaka-mitsuke to Tameike-Sanno 168%
Tokyo Metro Marunouchi Line Shin-otsuka to Myogadani 159%
Tokyo Metro Tozai Line Kiba to Monzen-nakacho 199%
Tokyo Metro Yurakucho Line Higashi-ikebukuro to Gokokuji 173%
Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line Machiya to Nishi-Nippori 181%
Tokyo Metro Hanzomon Line Shibuya to Omotesando 173%
JR Tokaido Line Kawasaki to Shinagawa 191%
JR Yokosuka Line Shin-kawasaki to Shinagawa 182%
JR Chuo Rapid Line Nakano to Shinjuku 198%
JR Chuo Sobu Line Yoyogi to Sendagaya 91%
JR Keihin-Tohoku Line Ueno to Okachimachi 209%
JR Joban Rapid Line Matsudo to Kita-senju 176%
JR Joban Sobu Line Kameari to Ayase 176%
JR Sobu Rapid Line Shin-koiwa to Kinshicho 180%
JR Sobu Line Kinshicho to Ryokoku 206%
Average of all 31 lines 171%
resource : http://whatjapanthinks.com/2008/09/07/japans-busiest-railway-lines/
The Japan Railways Group, more commonly known as JR Group (JRグループ, Jeiāru Gurūpu?), consists of seven for-profit companies that took over most of the assets and operations of the government-owned Japanese National Railways on April 1, 1987. Most of the liability of the JNR was assumed by the JNR Settlement Corporation.
The JR Group lies at the heart of Japan's railway network, operating a large proportion of intercity rail service (including the Shinkansen high-speed rail lines) and commuter rail service. A strong distinction is still made between JR and other private railway companies; for instance, the two are generally denoted differently on maps.
In 1964 the first Shinkansen, the Tokaido Line, opened between Tokyo and Osaka, paralleling the renowned Tokaido Road that had linked Edo (Tokyo) and Kyoto in samurai times. Later this line was extended beyond Osaka as the Sanyo Line to reach Hiroshima and Fukuoka. Only the Japan Rail Pass covers the Tokaido Shinkansen (except for Nozomi trains). The Sanyo Shinkansen is covered by both the Japan Rail Pass and JR West Sanyo Area Pass. There are three types of trains operating on the Tokaido/Sanyo Line.
Meaning 'hope,' the Nozomi trains are the fastest service on these lines. They take about 2.5 hours between Tokyo and Osaka, and roughly 5 hours from Tokyo all the way to Hakata (Fukuoka). They make only major stops such as Nagoya, Kyoto, Okayama and Hiroshima. As the Japan Rail Pass is not valid on Nozomi trains pass holders should use the Hikari trains described next.
Hikari, meaning 'light,' was the original Shinkansen service on the Tokaido/Sanyo Line. Since the introduction of the Nozomi trains, it now serves as the mid-level service making a few more stops, but still traveling very fast. Hikari trains link Tokyo and Osaka in about three hours. Holders of the Japan Rail Pass must use Hikari and Kodama trains. There are two Hikari trains per hour along this route. If you are traveling from Tokyo toward Hiroshima or Kyushu you will have to change Hikari trains in route.
This might be called the 'local' version of the Shinkansen since it makes all primary and secondary stops. But it is far from slow and is as much a 'bullet train' as the trains above. You will not use Kodama for very long distances; rather it is the train you may have to use for popular secondary stops such as Odawara (Hakone Park and Mt. Fuji) or Himeji (Himeji Castle). Like Hikari, it is fully covered by the Japan Rail Pass.
The Tohoku ('Northeast') region of Honshu is known for its hot springs and mountain scenery. The Tohoku Shinkansen serves the major cities of Sendai and Morioka. Service is fully covered by the Japan Rail Pass and the JR East passes. At present the line extends to Hachinohe; eventually it will link to Aomori at the north tip of Honshu.
This is the fastest service between Tokyo and Sendai, Morioka or Hachinohe. Hayate trains operate once an hour and take about 2.5 hours to Morioka, 3 hours to the end of the line at Hachinohe. All seats are reserved seating. At Hachinohe it is easy to change to a Limited Express link to Aomori.
Yamabiko and Max Yamabiko trains make somewhat more stops than Hayate. Yamabiko trains usually go as far as Morioka, Max Yamabiko only to Sendai. But travel time from Tokyo to Morioka is only about 15 minutes slower than Hayate.
This is basically a commuter 'bullet train' from Tokyo to distant suburbs as far as Koriyama. You might use the Nasuno if you are going to Nikko via Utsunomiya. Remember that these 'local' Shinkansen trains are still very fast and smooth riding!
The Akita Shinkansen branches off from the Tohoku Shinkansen at Morioka and crosses Honshu to the Japan Sea coast city of Akita. It stops at the popular tourist sites of scenic Lake Tazawa and the samurai town of Kakunodate. This line is of course included in both the Japan Rail Pass and JR East passes.
Named for a famous and beautiful poetess from Akita, the Komachi trains travel from Tokyo to Akita in about four hours with trains operating once an hour. As the train crosses Honshu it passes through scenic forested mountains.
This line branches off from the Tohoku Shinkansen at Fukushima and connects to the inland central cities of Yamagata and Shinjo. It is fully covered by the Japan Rail Pass and JR East passes.
The sleek silver Tsubasa trains link Tokyo and Yamagata once an hour taking just under three hours travel time. Only some Tsubasa trains continue to Shinjo. The Tsubasa trains are attached to Max Yamabiko trains (see above) as far as Fukushima where the two trains separate.
CThis line extends across central Japan to the important port of Niigata on the Japan Sea Coast. Since the 1990's Niigata has become even more important as a convenient link to Russia. There are two types of trains operating on this line, fully covered by the Japan Rail Pass and JR East passes.
These are the fastest trains operating between Tokyo and Niigata covering that route in roughly two hours. Toki and Max-Toki trains depart in both directions generally twice an hour. At the intermediate stop of Echigo-Yuzawa passengers can make connections via Limited Express to the Japan Sea cities of Toyama and Kanazawa.
The Tanigawa and Max-Tanigawa trains only travel between Tokyo Station and the ski resort of Gala-Yuzawa at Echigo-Yuzawa. They make all secondary stops but are still quite fast.
This branch was constructed to link Tokyo and Nagano for the Winter Olympic Games in 1998. It is popular for people going to the mountains of Central Japan to escape summer heat, or to ski in winter. It is fully covered by the Japan Rail Pass and JR East passes.
The only service on the Nagano Shinkansen, the Asama is named for the towering peak of volcanic Mount Asama in Nagano Prefecture. Trains operate one to three times per hour and take roughly 1.5 to 2 hours between Tokyo Station and Nagano City. Karuizawa is a popular resort area on this route. And don't miss the famous 'kamameshi' rice lunch from Yokogawa sold on these trains.
The newest addition to the 'bullet train' network is the Kyushu Shinkansen on Japan's southern island. At present the line is only partially complete linking Shin-Yatsushiro (near Kumamoto) with Kagoshima on the southern tip of the island. The section between Fukuoka (Hakata) and Shin-Yatsushiro is still serviced by fast Limited Express trains. It is covered by the Japan Rail Pass and Kyushu rail pass.
These new trains show the latest in train design and comfort as they swoop like swallows ('tsubame') through the beautiful Kyushu countryside. The Tsubame trains have only one class, upgraded Ordinary cars. The trip from Hakata to Kagoshima is only 2 hours 20 minutes on the fastest service including both Limited Express and Shinkansen segments. There are generally two connections every hour..
resource : http://www.japanrail.com/