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Railway under Osaka Bay in Hyogo 'vision'

Hyogo Prefecture's vision reaches far into the future when it comes to establishing a transportation network that is not only efficient but also people and nature-friendly.Details of the ""Hyogo 21st Century Transportation Vision"" were announced on December 14, setting 2030 as the target date.Learning from the experience of the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake, the ""vision"" proposes construction of multiple highway and railway routes, connecting one location with another, forming a series of networks.Specifically, fiveairports in and around Hyogo will be directly linked with major Japanese cities.Completion of a trunk highway network covering the entire Kinki region should be expedited.Port facilities should also be improved to accommodate next-generation vessels, such as the Techno Super Liner freighter.Also proposed was the consolidation of five railways which run through the prefecture - the Tokaido, Sanyo, Fukuchiyama, San-in and Bantan - linking Kobe, Amagasaki, Himeji and Toyooka.The network will be called the Hyogo Triangle Railway, and the necessary work to upgrade existing lines, such as electrification and double tracking, should be carried out.In times of natural disaster, the network's purpose would be to serve as detours.For long-term projects, the ""vision"" proposes construction of a trans-Osaka Bay underwater railway connecting Kobe Airport and Kansai International Airport in about 15 minutes.Also envisioned is introduction of a mag-lev train system in western Japan.