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Urasoe chosen as monorail system expansion route

Date Posted: 2008-03-27

After months of wrangling, meetings and public hearings, Urasoe City has been selected as a monorail extension destination.

The Okinawa Urban Monorail Extension Study Committee determined “the committee has come to the conclusion the Urasoe City route is the best.” Chairman Kiyoshi Uema made the announcement, saying the Urasoe route will “bring more customers in the future.” The new route will extend from the Yui Rail Shuri Station, the current end point, and continue on to the Okinawa Expressway Nishihara Interchange.

Urasoe City, Naha City and the Prefecture must now work out details on the construction budget, and who will pay what percentages of the costs for the new route, which the committee hopes to open in 2018. The cities and Okinawa Prefecture must first research land acquisition and coordinate approvals with the central government in Tokyo.

The Urasoe City route won out over another proposal that would have routed the extension in another direction, to the Prefecture Welfare Center. When citizens who are potential monorail system riders were polled, 57% chose the Urasoe route, against only 24% wanting a route to the welfare center.

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