Shinjuku Station
Photo: Pema Lama/Unsplash

Shinjuku Station is getting a ¥72.8 billion makeover to make it easier to navigate

Renovations to make the world’s busiest train station easier to use are underway – but it’ll take 26 years

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Written by
Emma Steen
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Getting lost in Shinjuku Station is an emotional experience. With 12 different train lines and 36 platforms, it’s officially the world’s busiest train station, with an estimated 3.59 million people passing through it every day. As if the sheer number of commuters didn’t make things disorienting enough, Shinjuku Station has over 200 exits that even locals have a difficult time navigating. 

Shinjuku Station
Photo: Tokyo Metropolitan Government

There might be an end to the chaos – at least, in the distant future – with renovations underway to improve the station’s layout and make it more hospitable for those of us passing through. New features will include a footpath allowing for people to cut through the station from the east side to the west side without having to go through any ticket barriers. 

The entire project is estimated to cost a whopping ¥72.8 billion, and it has started last week on July 8 with the reconstruction of the west and east exits

Shinjuku Station
Photo: Tokyo Metropolitan Government

This Shinjuku Station rejuvenation project, which covers an estimated 10.1 hectares of space, will completely transform Shinjuku Station as we know it. However, it’ll be a while before you get to see the results. Construction is expected to take 26 years, though a partial completion for the new east and west exits is set for 2035.

For now, better save yourself the stress by making note of your nearest exits before you head out to see the giant 3D cat billboard

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