West Japan Railway Co. (JR West) will build the largest train museum in Japan – a project that will cost about Y7 billion ($83 million). The museum will be ready in 2016 and will open in Kyoto.
The three-story high building will have an exhibition space covering about 31,000 square meters, and a covered promenade. The museum in Umekoji Park in Shimogyo Ward will display locomotives, carriages and other train features from the past, and it is expected to draw 800,000 visitors a year.
“We want to make this a major attraction for people across Japan and overseas,” JR West President Seiji Manabe said.
After it will be completed, the museum will be combined with the Umekoji Steam Locomotive Museum and it will display around 50 locomotives and carriages.
Among the trains on display in Kyoto will be a 500-series Shinkansen, the first commercially operated train in Japan to run at 300 kilometers per hour, and a “bonnet style” train with a hood on the front of the locomotive. The passenger seats of this train can turn into beds for night travel.