Okinawa Monorail
another Monorail Society Exclusive!
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 Page...

Okinawa Monorail - Photo Essay page ONE / TWO / THREE / FOUR / FIVE / SIX

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