"Michi-no-Eki" Rest Areas


1. What is "Michi-no-Eki"?

As a longer driving and female/elderly drivers become common, there is an increasing demand for resting areas along general roads where they can drop in and rest at ease so that they go back to safe driving which ultimately support smooth traffic flow.
With diverse values, people desire for unique and interesting places. These resting areas would provide various and unique services based on the local culture, history, tourist destinations and local specialities.
Resting areas are expected to attract a lot of tourists, which means it will help surrounding areas to become more vibrant and facilitate a synergistic relationship with other local areas through the road.
Aiming for these effects, the Rest Areas network called "Michi-no-Eki" were introduced. Michi-no-Eki plays 3 different roles; "a place for resting" for road users, "a place to provide information" for both road users and locals, and "a place to facilitate local communications".

Where are they located?

-Rest Areas are located at appropriate intervals to best serve as a resting place for road users.


-Parking space, washrooms and telephone booths available 24 hours a day -Attentive information service provided at the information desk


-Free parking space large enough for road users to rest -Clean washrooms -Information center for road users and locals -Various service facilities -Barrier-free designed walking paths

Eligible local proponents

-Municipalities or the equivalent public bodies Remarks -Facilities are designed so that children, elderly, and physically challenged people can easily use them. -Michi-no-Eki is designed to suit local beautiful sceneries.

Disaster-prevention features in the event of natural disaster

-With power a generation facility, a storage for reserve stock, and a heliport, Michi-no-Eki serves as a local disaster-prevention center. -Michi-no-Eki actually played an important role in providing a place for life-saving activities, distribution of relief goods, evacuation center and food distribution.

2. Automated driving service using Michi-no-Eki

In 2017, the MLIT started a pilot program to demonstrate a VI-based autonomous driving service around Michi-no-Eki which is expected to assure smooth transportation of people and goods in hilly and mountainous areas where many elderly people reside.

Examined items at the pilot program

Driving route in the experiment
Road map