A maddening wall that has long irritated Tokyo commuters by separating passengers on the same platform has finally been torn down.
The barrier, described by Tokyo Gov. Naoki Inose as a "fool's wall," was a symbol of petty line-drawing between the capital's two rival subway systems-Tokyo Metro Co., owned jointly by the national government and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, and Toei Subway, owned solely by the metro government.
Demolishing the wall may be more than just a matter of passenger convenience-it could herald the way toward a more efficient, unified system.
From Saturday, travelers using Kudanshita station near the Imperial Palace in the city center won't have to waste minutes tramping up flights of stairs, passing through two ticket barriers, then descending more steps just to end up within a meter or two of where they started.
While the need to scrap the wall may have been obvious, it could be said the need to unify the city's baffling subway system is just as obvious.
On average, a whopping 8.6 million passengers use Tokyo's subway system each day, according to the Japan Subway Association. While the figure may be inflated by the fact that a person is counted each time he or she changes trains, the system is still indisputably the world's busiest. By comparison, 7.0 million people per day use the Moscow system, 5.9 million use the Seoul system, and 4.4 million use the New York system.
A strong 6.1 earthquake has struck off the northern coast of Japan's main Honshu island, seismologists say, but no tsunami warning was issued and there are no immediate reports of damage. (news.com.au )
Yahoo Japan Corp said on Friday night it suspected that up to 22 million of its user IDs may have been "leaked" and it detected an unauthorized attempt to access the administrative system of its web portal Yahoo Japan, the Kyodo news agency reported. (Reuters )
China's television regulator has ordered a crackdown on dramas about the country's battles with Japan during and before World War Two and demanded they be more serious, state media said on Friday, following viewer complaints about ludicrous storylines. (Reuters )
Shukan Post (May 24) conveys the difficulties experienced by other parts of the adult-entertainment biz in servicing customers from the communist nation.
A deri heru (“delivery health”) call-girl tells the tabloid that she is often requested to arrive at major hotels in the Shinjuku and Ikebukuro entertainment areas of Tokyo by Chinese visitors. (Tokyo Reporter)