The Osaka Metro is slated for a bold redevelopment of its underground network, in conjunction with the construction of a futuristic metro station for the island of Yumeshima.
Osaka Metro has announced the redevelopment of its underground network and a new station for the manmade island of Yumeshima in light of the 2025 World Expo. The large-scale plan will feature a futuristic social life infrastructure that comprises a 55-storey skyscraper that will reach 250 metres in height. The station will contain entertainment facilities, offices, retail spaces and a hotel.
Additionally, the plan includes the renovation of 15 existing stations on the Midosuji and Chuo lines, self-driving vehicles, underground streets, and new digital functions and services.
The ambitious redesign of the underground network is part of the development of the artificial Yumeshima Island, located in Osaka Bay, which is destined to become a new international tourist base, in addition to hosting the World Expo in 2025.
The futuristic skyscraper station by Osaka Metro will serve as an extension of the Chuo line on the island, offering various new facilities and an observation deck on the top floor.
Osaka Metro President Hideaki Kawai said LED lighting would be installed in the underground tunnel leading to Yumeshima from the mainland "to turn it into a space that can be linked to the future."
Osaka Metro also unveiled plans for a makeover of 15 stations along the Midosuji and Chuo lines, a project that will cost 30 billion yen ($3 billion AUD), with each station reborn based on various themes that befit their characteristic. For example, the concept for the Shin-Osaka Station of the Midosuji Line is "Osaka of the near future", while "history" will be the theme for the Yodoyabashi Station along the same line. Similarly, "textiles" will be the theme for Shinsaibashi Station and "animals" will be the concept for Dobutsuen-mae Station, given that it is near the zoo.
The company wanted to create a carnival atmosphere at the stations so the objective of using the subway will be to enjoy it rather than simply to get from A to B.
The project began construction in 2018 and is set for completion in 2024.