Monday, March 25, 2013

The 50th Anniversary of Green Colored Train

EMU JR East 231-500 series, "the 50th anniversary color", arrives at Tokyo Station
 
The Yamanote Line is one of the most crowded railway routes in Japan. There are 29 stations over a total of 34 kilometers of track. An eleven-car train is operated every 3 minutes on average. All the trains run in the same direction throughout the day, clockwise or counterclockwise, as the route is looped. The train covers the entire route in about 60 minutes. Most of the stations are interchanges to the subway, private railways and/or other JR lines.

The Yamanote Line was fully opened in 1925. It is famous for "green colored trains", which have been a tradition of this route for 50 years. Currently, JR East is operating a special train on the Yamanote Line in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of green colored train operations. The coloring of this special train is similar to that of the first generation green colored train, namely the EMU 103 series.

The 103 series was launched on the Yamanote Line in 1963. It was a steel train, whose body color was a monochrome in green; meanwhile the present green colored train, the EMU 231-500 series, is stainless silver colored with a green colored stripe (see my blog on June 23rd, 2011).

For your information, all of the first generation green colored trains, the EMU 103 series, have already been retired from the Tokyo metropolitan area; however, we can still see their "brothers" in the western part of Japan.

The green colored Yamanote Line train is heading toward the next 50 years.
 
Side view of the EMU JR East 231-500 series, "the 50th anniversary color", set number ToU 545
 
More information about EMU JR East 231 series (in Japanese):