Hokkaido Shinkansen Bullet Train Line
Based on the National Shinkansen Lines Development Act, the development of Shinkansen lines is determined by the master plan set by the Minister of Land, Infrastructure and Transport which defines Shinkansen lines that should be constructed and conducts required investigations based on the national Shinkansen line determination method. In November1973, the decision was made to develop a Hokkaido Shinkansen line (between Aomori and Sapporo).
In January 1998, it was decided to begin investigation for station locations for a Shin-Hokadate Station (tentative name) while the Government-and-Ruling-Parties New Shinkansen Line Examination Commission made decisions on groundbreaking and priorities regarding breaking new ground, an official announcement of a route and stations between Shin-Aomori and Sapporo was promptly announced and investigation to assess environmental impact was begun.
In response, as a result of adjustment by the organs concerned, in February 1998 an announcement from the Japan Railway Construction Corporation named nine stations between Shin-Aomori and Sapporo over a 360km route. Investigation of a Shin-Hakodate station area design started in May of the same year followed in October by assessment procedure based on the Environmental Assessment Act.
Moreover, by a government-and-ruling-parties agreement in December 2000, while accepting the application for the construction of an implementation plan, it was decided to conduct an investigation of the freight railroad Seikan Tunnel run between Shin-Aomori and Sapporo and make a decision after an environmental impact assessment was made.
Then, after the environmental impact assessment procedure was completed, the approval application of the construction implementation plan of the Hokkaido Shinkansen was made to the Minister of Land, Infrastructure and Transport from the Japan Railway Construction Corporation on January 8, 2002.
Following the government-and-ruling-parties agreement in December 2004, regarding the Hokkaido Shinkansen (between Shin-Aomori and Shin-Hakodate), the first construction work was begun in 2005, aiming at completion by the end of 2015 while striving for the earliest completion date possible.
Based on this, the construction implementation plan was approved in April 2005 and construction work began in May.
While facilitating exchange between metropolitan areas, the Hokkaido Shinkansen Line contributes to a more prosperous exchange between Hokkaido and the Tohoku district, and has a very big effect on the economy of the area along the line as well as on the multi-axial national land structure of our country. Since the construction of the Hokkaido Shinkansen Line is so important, we look forward to an early completion of the project.