another Monorail Society
Page Three of Six
After our taxi tour of the alignment, we went to the Operations,
Maintenance and Storage Facility (OMSF) near the airport to meet
our local hosts. Outside the building was this display of a full-sized
bogie. The red wheels are to back up the main tires in the rare
event of a flat. Hats off to you Mr. Wenner-Gren and your engineers,
the Alweg design is still going strong!
Our hosts for the day were Akinori Kosaka, Manager of the
Okinawa Intercity Engineering System Joint Venture, and Toshimi
Hashimoto, Head Official of Intercity Engineering System Joint
Venture. Here Mr. Kosaka is explaining the details of the system.
The Okinawa Monorail Control Room monitors during the test phase
of the line. The signal system uses Automated Train Control (ATC).
A workstation only a monorailist could love!
After our briefing and tour of the control center, we were escorted
to a nearby station. From a elevated pedestrian walkway we got
this nice view of the track as it splits for the station. For
just a moment, let's pretend Okinawa didn't select monorail. How
many street-based light rail lines could you fit on that landscaped
center strip? First, the trees would have to be ripped out and
two of those traffic lanes would also be tracked over.
Since the system was not yet operational for passengers, it was
necessary for us to become temporary staff members. That's TMS
member and videographer extraordinaire, David M. Ice, and yours
truly, Kim Pedersen, President of the Monorail Society, wearing
official Okinawa Intercity Engineering System JV jackets and hardhats.
Yes, we are smiling, because we're about to ride a brand new monorail
leaving from this station! (photo by Kentatsu Ito)
We're on! These Hitachi trains are spacious and beautiful. The
capacity is 165 persons per train (7 persons per square meter).
The floor panels allow easy access to the wheels on the bogies
beneath the floor for daily visual checks. Next
Okinawa Monorail - Photo Essay page ONE / TWO / THREE / FOUR / FIVE / SIX
/ back to the Special Features Page