Construction of Sagamihara maglev station underway

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Excavation work for a subway station for a magnetic levitation train between Nagoya and Tokyo is underway in Sagamihara City, Kanagawa Prefecture.

The Central Japan Railway Company, or JR Tokai, is building the facility 30 meters underground at its deepest point. The site was opened to journalists on Monday for the first time.

The magnetic levitation line is designed to operate at a maximum speed of 500 kilometers per hour and to travel from the Shinagawa rail hub in Tokyo to Nagoya in 40 minutes.

Railway officials say workers have dug 17 meters below the surface of the site and measures to prevent the ground from giving way are in place.

Digging is expected to be completed in March next year, when construction of the station itself begins.

JR Tokai manager Yoshikawa Taro said work has progressed well thanks to the cooperation of the local community.

He said the rail operator will ensure that the construction is safe and the environment is protected.

JR Tokai originally targeted 2027 as the line’s start date, but now says that schedule is unlikely to be met.

Shizuoka Prefecture, located between Nagoya and Shinagawa, refused to approve preparations for the construction of a tunnel needed for the line, citing the possible impact on water resources.

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