Iwate Galaxy Railway Line

The Iwate Galaxy Railway Line (いわて銀河鉄道線, Iwate Ginga Tetsudō-sen) is a railway line in Japan operated by the "third sector" publicly and privately owned operator Iwate Galaxy Railway Company. It connects Morioka Station in Morioka, Iwate to Metoki Station in Sannohe, Aomori.

Iwate Galaxy Railway Line
An IGR 7000 series EMU at Morioka Station, March 2007
LocaleIwate Prefecture
Opened1 December 2002
OwnerIwate Galaxy Railway Company
Rolling stockIGR 7000 series (701 series) EMUs
Line length82.0 km (51.0 mi)
Track gauge1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)
Electrification20,000 V AC, 50 Hz overhead catenary
Operating speed100 km/h (60 mph)
Route map

0.0 Morioka
JR East: Yamada Line
Iwate Galaxy Railway Control Center
3.2 Aoyama
Tokusa River
5.6 Kuriyagawa
9.0 Nagano Signal
to 1968
10.2 Sugo
12.2 Takizawa
16.6 Shibutami
21.3 Kōma
JR East: Hanawa Line
26.9 Iwate-Kawaguchi
32.0 Iwate-Numakunai
37.3 Midō
41.6 Yachi Signal
to 1949
44.4 Okunakayama-Kōgen
48.4 Nishioka Signal
to 1966
52.2 Kotsunagi
55.3 Takimi Signal
to 1967
59.8 Kozuya
64.5 Ichinohe
67.6 Torigoe Signal
to 1968
70.8 Ninohe
73.7 Tomai
78.4 Kintaichi-Onsen
82.0 Metoki
JR East: Tōhoku Shinkansen

Formerly part of the East Japan Railway Company (JR East) Tohoku Main Line, it was separated from 1 December 2002 with the opening of the Tohoku Shinkansen which parallels the route. JR Freight services and JR East overnight sleeping car trains continue to travel over the line.[1]

Station list

Station Japanese Distance (km) Transfers Location
Morioka 盛岡 - 0.0 Tohoku Shinkansen, Tohoku Main Line, Tazawako Line (Akita Shinkansen), Yamada Line Morioka Iwate
Aoyama 青山 3.2 3.2  
Kuriyagawa 厨川 2.4 5.6  
Sugo 巣子 4.6 10.2   Takizawa
Takizawa 滝沢 2.0 12.2  
Shibutami 渋民 4.4 16.6   Morioka
Kōma 好摩 4.7 21.3 Hanawa Line (some through services)
Iwate-Kawaguchi 岩手川口 5.6 26.9   Iwate
Iwate-Numakunai いわて沼宮内 5.1 32.0 Tohoku Shinkansen
Midō 御堂 5.3 37.3  
Okunakayama-Kōgen 奥中山高原 7.1 44.4   Ichinohe
Kotsunagi 小繋 7.8 52.2  
Kozuya 小鳥谷 7.6 59.8  
Ichinohe 一戸 4.7 64.5  
Ninohe 二戸 6.3 70.8 Tohoku Shinkansen Ninohe
Tomai 斗米 2.9 73.7  
Kintaichi-Onsen 金田一温泉 4.7 78.4  
Metoki 目時 3.6 82.0 Aoimori Railway Line (through service) Sannohe Aomori
Through to Hachinohe Station on the Aoimori Railway Line

Rolling stock

The Iwate Galaxy Railway Company owns a fleet of IGR 7000 series 2-car electric multiple unit (EMU) trains. The fleet consists of four 7000-0 series sets, which were originally JR East 701-1000 series sets transferred from Morioka in December 2002, and three newly built 7000-100 series sets.[1]


The section of the line between Morioka and Metoki first opened on 1 September 1891, and was nationalized on 1 November 1906.[1] The line was double-tracked by 12 July 1968, and it was electrified on 22 August 1968.[1] With the privatization of Japanese National Railways (JNR) on 1 April 1987, the line came under the control of East Japan Railway Company (JR East).[1] From 1 December 2002, with the opening of the parallel Tohoku Shinkansen extension to Hachinohe, ownership of the line was transferred to the third-sector Iwate Galaxy Railway Company.[1]


  1. Terada, Hirokazu (19 January 2013). データブック日本の私鉄 [Databook: Japan's Private Railways]. Japan: Neko Publishing. p. 15. ISBN 978-4-7770-1336-4.
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