Japan’s land and transport ministry has come up with proposals to resolve a dispute between a train operator and a prefectural government over a project to build a super-fast, magnetically levitated, or maglev, train link.
The Central Japan Railway Company plans to start operating the high-speed train link between Tokyo and Nagoya, central Japan, in 2027. But the deadline is unlikely to be met due to the dispute between the firm and the government of Shizuoka Prefecture.
The prefectural government is refusing to allow the company to start preparatory work for digging a tunnel in the prefecture. Facilities would be constructed to process the muddy water produced during drilling.
The prefectural government says it is concerned about the possible impact on local water resources.
The land and transport ministry on Thursday sent a letter to Shizuoka Prefecture and the Central Japan Railway Company.
The letter asks the company not to start drilling the tunnel until a government expert panel completes an environmental assessment of the tunnel work.
The ministry is asking Shizuoka Prefecture to approve the start of the preparatory work as soon as possible, so that the relevant administrative procedures can begin this month.
The ministry is also proposing that the railway company agree to make any necessary changes to the facilities during the preparatory work.
Ministry officials plan to explain the proposals directly to Central Japan Railway President Kaneko Shin and Shizuoka Prefectural Governor Kawakatsu Heita.