Projected Shinkansen Bullet Train Lines
In response to the success of the Tokaido Shinkansen bullet train line, the Nationwide Shinkansen Railway Development Law was enacted in May 1970 with the goal of efficiently linking key cities across the nation. Based on this law, the development plans for some Shinkansen services are already defined, including operation method, maximum speed, and an estimation of construction costs. Of such services, the following five have been classified as Projected Shinkansen Bullet Train Lines; Hokkaido, Tohoku (Morioka to Aomori), Hokuriku, and Kyushu (Kagoshima route and Nagasaki route). The development plan was finalized in November 1973, and the green light was given to start construction work. However, two waves of oil crisis and the financial crisis of the Japan National Railway forced the Cabinet to freeze construction in 1982. The suspension was finally lifted in January 1987. In January 1989, the government and ruling parties agreed on the basic framework for securing construction funds. As a result, construction work began for the Takasaki - Karuizawa portion of the Hokuriku Shinkansen line 16 years after the plan was originally approved.
The Japan Railway Construction Public Corporation
The Japan Railway Construction Public Corporation was established in March 1964 based on the Japan Railway Construction Public Corporation Law to promote the construction of railway lines, thus improving the Japanese railway networks and rectifying regional imbalances. It inherited the Shinkansen construction business, previously undertaken by JNR. When Nationwide Shinkansen Railway Development Law was enacted, the public corporation built the first Shinkansen bullet train line in June 1970. In June 1972, it took on the building and improving of private railway lines to meet the increased demand for commuter transportation in urban areas. The Railway Development Fund was established in October 1991, promoting the construction of Projected Shinkansen Bullet Train Lines. With interest-free funding, the corporation built key trunk lines and urban railway services, introduced double-tracks to congested services, and upgraded the specifications of existing railway lines. When the Japanese National Railway Settlement Corporation was dissolved in October 1998, the corporation inherited its assets and the responsibility of selling them.