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Kanagawa commuters rejoice: New direct service to Tokyo's Shinjuku starts

This file photo taken on Sept. 2, 2019 shows a test train for direct-access services from Sotetsu lines in central Kanagawa Prefecture to JR Shinjuku Station in Tokyo. (Mainichi/Naotsune Umemura)

TOKYO -- People jetting back and forth between Sagami Railway Co. (Sotetsu)'s Ebina Station in Ebina, central Kanagawa Prefecture, and JR Shinjuku Station in Tokyo will now have a faster go of it, as a new direct line launched operations on Nov. 30.

The new services use an about 2.7-kilometer connecting line built between Nishiya Station on Sotetsu's main line, and Yokohama-Hazawa Station on JR East's Tokaido Freight Line. The direct trains make 46 round trips a day between central Kanagawa Prefecture and Shinjuku Stations, with the fastest of these making the journey between Futamatagawa and Shinjuku stations in 44 minutes.

During the peak morning commute time, some direct trains originating on the Sotetsu lines will continue on from Shinjuku to JR Omiya, in Saitama Prefecture just north of Tokyo.

(Japanese original by Tamami Kawakami, City News Department)

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