Friday, 17 January 2014

Train in Yokohama: The 205 series on the Yokohama Line

EMU JR East 205 series stands at Yokohama Station on the Yokohama Line
The JR East Yokohama Line is one of the main transportation arteries in the Yokohama area. It was opened in 1908 to transport silk from the midland area to Yokohama Port. Connecting Higashi-Kanagawa and Hachiouji, the route length is 42.6km.

One of the features of this line is its route arrangement. The Yokohama Line forms part of the outer ring railway in the Tokyo metropolitan area. Ths route intersects many radially-arranged trunk lines, such as JR Central-Tokaido Shinkansen, Tokyu-Toyoko Line, Odakyu-Odawara Line and Keio-Sagamihara Line.

An 8-car train, the EMU 205 series is operated as a singular model on the Yokohama Line. It was introduced onto the track in 1988 to replace an old model, the 103 series.

On April 10th 2012, JR East held a press release, in which they announced that 224 units of new EMUs, the E233-6000 series, would be introduced to the Yokohama Line in 2014 to replace the EMU 205 series. The first set was dispatched from J-TREC Yokohama Factory on January 7th, 2014. Currently, JR East is conducting its test run on the track. According to some media, the first set will debut on February 16th for commercial operations.

What will be the fate of the old 205 series? According to other media, all sets of the 205 series will be retired from the Yokohama Line by August this year.

I hope that the 205 series on the Yokohama Line finds out a new assignment, such as commuter transportation in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Close-up of KuHa205-69 of the EMU JR East 205 series