Japan National Route 58

National Route 58 (国道58号, Kokudō Gojūhachi-gō) is a Japanese national highway connecting the capital cities Kagoshima and Naha of Kagoshima Prefecture and Okinawa Prefecture, respectively. With a total length of 884.4 kilometers (549.5 mi), it is the longest national highway in Japan, though it measures only 245.3 kilometers (152.4 mi) on land. The highway begins at an intersection with National Routes 3 and 10 in Kagoshima. From Kagoshima, it travels southwest along the first island chain that divides the Pacific Ocean from the East China Sea. From the north to the south, it has sections on the islands of Tanegashima, Amami Ōshima, and finally, Okinawa. On Okinawa it ends at an intersection with National Routes 330, 331, and 390 in Naha.

National Route 58 shield

National Route 58
国道58号
Japan National Route 58 highlighted in red
Route information
Length245.3 km[1] (152.4 mi)
Existed1972–present
Major junctions
From National Route 3 / National Route 10 in Kagoshima
To National Route 330 / National Route 331 / National Route 390 in Naha
Section 1
From National Route 3 / National Route 10 in Kagoshima
ToPort of Kagoshima
Section 2
FromNishinoomote, Kagoshima
ToMinamitane, Kagoshima
Section 3
FromAmami, Kagoshima
ToSetouchi, Kagoshima
Section 4
FromKunigami, Okinawa
Major
junctions
National Route 331
National Route 505
National Route 449
Okinawa Expressway
To National Route 330 / National Route 331 / National Route 390 in Naha
Highway system
National highways of Japan
Expressways of Japan
National Route 57National Route 101

Route descriptionEdit

 
National Route 58 as seen from Michinoeki Kyoda in Nago

This very unusual road has continuous numbering over disconnected segments on the islands of Kyūshū, Tanegashima, Amami Ōshima, and Okinawa. The road has a total length of 245.3-kilometer-long (152.4 mi) on land, but it has a length of 884.4 kilometers (549.5 mi) when its maritime sections are included into its total length,[1] making it the longest national highway in Japan.[2] It originates in the prefectural capital of Kagoshima in Kagoshima Prefecture and terminates in Naha, the capital of Okinawa Prefecture.[3]

Kagoshima PrefectureEdit

At its northern terminus, National Route 58 meets National Routes 3, 10, 224, 225, and 226. The segment in the city of Kagoshima has a length of about 700 meters (2,300 ft) and also carries National Route 224 towards the Port of Kagoshima.[4] At the port, National Route 224 leaves National Route 58, continuing by ferry to the city of Tarumizu beyond the stratovolcano, Sakurajima.[5]

Heading south by ferry, the highway resumes its land route in Nishinoomote on the northern end of Tanegashima. It travels alongside the western coast of the island within Nishinoomote. Upon crossing into the town, Nakatane, the highway ventures inland, heading towards the central district of the town. Continuing south the highway crosses into the town, Minamitane on the southern end of Tanegashima. After traveling through the center of Minamitane, the highway turns northwest and heads towards the west coast of the island where the maritime section of the highway resumes at the Port of Shimama. Unlike the previous maritime section, no ferry carries the highway from Shimama to its next land segment on Amami Ōshima. In all, the highway has a length of 49.7 kilometers (30.9 mi) on Tanegashima.[4]

Resuming its land route in the Amami Ōshima city of Amami, the highway travels southeast across the island from its northeastern tip. The highway crosses through the town of Tatsugo and then returns into the city of Amami. After passing through the central part of the city, the highway curves to the south, traveling towards the island's eastern coast. It then curves to the west, heading towards the south-central part of the island. It curves to the south once and crosses into Setouchi. Upon reaching the island's southern coast, the highway curves to the southwest, heading towards the Setouchi's central district on the southwestern end of Amami Ōshima. In the center of the town the highway's land section ends once again. Like the previous maritime section, there is no ferry between Amami Ōshima and the highway's land section on Okinawa. In all, the highway has a length of 72.7 kilometers (45.2 mi) on Amami Ōshima.[4]

Okinawa PrefectureEdit

The highway's final land segment starts near the Port of Oku in Kunigami at the northern tip of Okinawa Island. It travels around the edges of Cape Hedo from the point's eastern side to the west coast of the cape and then curves to the southwest running along the western coast of the island to the highway's southern terminus in Naha. Further to the south along the coast, the highway crosses into the village of Ōgimi. In the village the highway meets National Route 331 on the northern shore of Shioya Bay. As the highway leaves the village and crosses in the city of Nago, it curves to the west. It then meets National Route 505, and proceeds to the south, leaving the coast and crossing the bottom of the Motobu Peninsula.[4]

As the highway approaches central Nago, it has an intersection with the Nago-higashi Bypass, an alternate route of National Route 58. Upon reaching central Nago, the highway meets the Nago Bypass, an alternate route of National Route 449. Curving to the south, the highway meets the mainline of National Route 449. Here the highway meets the western coast of Okinawa once more and continues traveling alongside it away from central Nago. Near the southern limits of the city the highway meets the northern end of the Okinawa Expressway,[4] a tolled, limited-access highway that parallels National Route 58 to the east from Nago to Naha.[6] The national highway continues south along the coast passing through the rural villages of Onna and Yomitan.[4]

In the town of Kadena, the highway curves its way around the northwestern and western edges of the United States Air Force's Kadena Air Base. Proceeding south, National Route 58 passes through the town of Chatan and its American Village, a shopping and entertainment district that boast American themes.[7] The town is also home to the United States Marine Corps Camp Lester. The highway curves to the southwest after leaving Chatan and enterning the city of Ginowan, home to the Marine Corps Air Station Futenma. The highway travels along the northern edge of the installation, here an auxiliary route of National Route 58, the Ginowan Bypass, travels further to the north along the coast. The two highways meet after they cross into the city of Urasoe. Another US military installation, Camp Kinser, is located to the west of the National Route 58 in Urasoe while the central district of the city lies to the east of the route.[7][4]

Crossing into Naha, the last stretch of the highway is six lanes wide in the city. The highway is flanked by shops and sites that display the influence the American occupation had on the city.[7] The highway ends at a junction just north of Meiji Bridge with National Routes 330, 331, and 390.[4][3]

HistoryEdit

 
Government Highway 1 in 1954

The precursor to what would eventually become National Route 58 on Okinawa was originally established in the 15th century during the reign of Shō Kinpuku, ruler of the Ryukyu Kingdom. Shō Kinpuku ordered the construction of a road, called the Yanbaru-kokudō (やんばる国道) that traveled all of the way around Okinawa. National Route 58 is mostly situated along the western route of the Yanbaru-kokudō.[8] The Yanbaru-kokudō was designated as an Okinawa Prefecture Road in 1915 between the cities of Nago and Naha.[8]

The direct predecessors to National Route 58 in Okinawa are Government Highway 1, which was maintained by the Government of the Ryukyu Islands as well as Military Road 1 and Military Road 10 during the United States Civil Administration of the Ryukyu Islands. Together these highways functioned as the island's main road.[9] Known then as Highway 1, the route was mainly developed as a high-speed logistics route for the US military. The military's vehicles took priority over the local Okinawan driving community, who were not allowed to pass US military convoys and vehicles.[7] After the return of the Ryukyu Islands from the United States to Japan on 15 May 1972, the aforementioned highways were all re-designated as a part of National Route 58. It remains the only Japanese national highway to be given a two-digit number following the reclassification of the Primary and Secondary National Highways as the General National Highways in 1965.[9] Until 30 July 1978, traffic on National Route 58 in Okinawa Prefecture drove on the right rather than the left. After the 730 switch, Okinawa joined the rest of Japan in driving on the left in accordance to the Vienna Convention on Road Traffic.[10]

Major intersectionsEdit

The list below does not account for distances on the highway's maritime sections.

PrefectureLocationkm[11][12][13][14]miDestinationsNotes
KagoshimaKagoshima0.00.0   National Route 10 – to National Route 3, Kumamoto, Satsumasendai, Miyazaki, KirishimaNorthern terminus; northern end of National Route 224 concurrency
0.10.062  Kagoshima Prefecture Route 25 – Kamō, Yoshida, Hioki, Kagoshima-Chūō Station
0.60.37  Kagoshima Prefecture Route 204 north – Sakurajima Ferry
Kagoshima Prefecture Route 214 south – Makurazaki, Ibusuki
0.70.43Kagoshima PortSouthern end of National Route 224 concurrency
Kagoshima Bay / East China Sea  Kagoshima–Nishinoomote ferry
KagoshimaNishinoomote0.70.43Kagoshima Prefecture Route 581 north – Kunigami
Kagoshima Prefecture Route 582 south – Minamitane, Nakatane
1.40.87Kagoshima Prefecture Route 75 south – Iseki, Anno
1.71.1Kagoshima Prefecture Route 582 north – Kunigami, Nishinoomote Port
2.31.4  Kagoshima Prefecture Route 76 south – Cosmoport Tanegashima
Nakatane18.111.2  Kagoshima Prefecture Route 583 east – Cosmoport Tanegashima, Jurokuban
26.216.3Kagoshima Prefecture Route 588 south – Shimama Port
27.517.1Kagoshima Prefecture Route 75 north – Taiyo Village Athletic ParkNorthern end of Kagoshima Prefecture Route 75 concurrency
27.717.2Kagoshima Prefecture Route 75 south – Tanegashima Space Center, Kumano BeachSouthern end of Kagoshima Prefecture Route 75 concurrency
Minamitane41.725.9Kagoshima Prefecture Route 586 east – Tanegashima Space Center
49.630.8Kagoshima Prefecture Route 75 south – Cape Kadokura
50.331.3Kagoshima Prefecture Route 588 north – Nishinoomote, central Nakatane
50.431.3Shimama Port
Pacific Ocean
KagoshimaAmami50.431.3  Kagoshima Prefecture Route 601 east – Amami Airport, Cape Ayamaru
Kagoshima Prefecture Route 602 north – Gamozaki Tourist Park
Tatsugō58.836.5  Kagoshima Prefecture Route 82 east – Amami Airport, Cape Ayamaru, Amami Park
63.239.3Kagoshima Prefecture Route 81 west – Akina, the Remains of Nanshū Saigō
66.541.3Kagoshima Prefecture Route 611 south – Tagumo, Toguchi
Amami78.148.5Kagoshima Prefecture Route 79 south – Yamato, Oshima Branch Office, Amami City Office
Kagoshima Prefecture Route 81 east – Yamato, Ohama Seaside Park, Naze Port
83.651.9Kagoshima Prefecture Route 607 east – Amami Ōshima Pongee Fabric Dyeing Park, Kominato
98.461.1Kagoshima Prefecture Route 609 east – Yanma, Amami Island
106.766.3Kagoshima Prefecture Route 85 west – Yuwandake Park, Uken
Setouchi121.375.4Kagoshima Prefecture Route 79 north – Uken, Shinokawa
Kagoshima Prefecture Route 626 ends
Northern end of Kagoshima Prefecture Route 626 concurrency
121.475.4Kagoshima Prefecture Route 626 east – Yadorihama, Honohoshi Beach, SokaruSouthern end of Kagoshima Prefecture Route 626 concurrency
Pacific Ocean
OkinawaKunigami121.475.4Okinawa Prefecture Route 70 southRoadway continues as Okinawa Prefecture Route 70
143.989.4Okinawa Prefecture Route 2 east – Ada
Ōgimi159.899.3  National Route 331 south – Higashi
161.2100.2Okinawa Prefecture Route 9 east – Taiho Dam, Higashi
Nago166.8103.6Okinawa Prefecture Route 14 east – Higashi
169.6105.4Okinawa Prefecture Route 110 – Kouri Island, Yagaji Island
171.0106.3  National Route 505 west – Ocean Expo Park (Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium), Nakijin
173.9108.1Okinawa Prefecture Route 71 – Nakijin, central Nago
174.4108.4  National Route 58 south (Nago-higashi Bypass) – Naha, Okinawa
177.2110.1Okinawa Prefecture Route 84 – central Nago, Ocean Expo Park (Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium)
177.7110.4  National Route 449 west (Nago Bypass) – Motobu
178.5110.9  National Route 449 west – Ocean Expo Park (Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium), Motobu
Okinawa Prefecture Route 91 east – central Nago
180.1111.9Okinawa Prefecture Route 71 north – central NagoNorthern end of Okinawa Prefecture Route 71 concurrency
180.6112.2Okinawa Prefecture Route 84 west – Nago Castle
181.6112.8   National Route 58 north (Nago-higashi Bypass) / National Route 329 south – Okinawa, Uruma
185.6–
187.0
115.3–
116.2
  Okinawa Expressway south – Naha, IshikawaKyoda Interchange (E58 exit 10)
186.1115.6Okinawa Prefecture Route 71 south – GinozaSouthern end of Okinawa Prefecture Route 71 concurrency
Onna197.3122.6Okinawa Prefecture Route 104 south – Kin
198.4123.3  National Route 58 south (Onna Bypass) – Naha, Kadena
204.0126.8  National Route 58 north (Onna Bypass) – Ocean Expo Park (Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium), Nago
  Okinawa Prefecture Route 88 south – to Okinawa Expressway, Yaka
204.8127.3  National Route 58 south (Onna-minami Bypass) – Naha, Kadena
210.6130.9  National Route 58 north (Onna-minami Bypass) – Ocean Expo Park (Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium), Nago
  Okinawa Prefecture Route 73 east – to Okinawa Expressway, Uruma
211.9131.7Okinawa Prefecture Route 6 east – HigashionnaNorthern end of Okinawa Prefecture Route 6 concurrency
212.8132.2Okinawa Prefecture Route 6 west – Cape ZanpaSouthern end of Okinawa Prefecture Route 6 concurrency
Yomitan218.2135.6Okinawa Prefecture Route 12 west – Cape Zanpa
220.7137.1Okinawa Prefecture Route 6 east – Cape Zanpa
221.5137.6Okinawa Prefecture Route 16 west – FurugenNorthern end of Okinawa Prefecture Route 16 concurrency
Kadena222.4138.2  Okinawa Prefecture Route 16 / Okinawa Prefecture Route 74 east – to Okinawa Expressway, OkinawaSouthern end of Okinawa Prefecture Route 16 concurrency
Chatan227.3141.2  Okinawa Prefecture Route 23 east – to Okinawa Expressway, Okinawa
229.4142.5Okinawa Prefecture Route 24 east – Okinawa
229.7142.7Okinawa Prefecture Route 130 east – Kitanakagusuku
Ginowan231.6143.9  National Route 58 south (Ginowan Bypass) – Okinawa Convention Center, Ginowan Seaside Park
232.3144.3Okinawa Prefecture Route 81 east – Futenma
235.4146.3Okinawa Prefecture Route 34 east – Maehara
Urasoe236.1146.7  National Route 58 north (Ginowan Bypass) – Okinawa Convention Center
  Okinawa Prefecture Route 153 south – to Okinawa Expressway
238.9148.4Okinawa Prefecture Route 38 east – Nishihara, Urasoe Art Museum
Naha241.1149.8  Okinawa Prefecture Route 82 east – to Okinawa Expressway, Shuri Castle, Shikina-en Royal Garden
242.4150.6Naha Central Belt Highway east – Makabi
242.9150.9Okinawa Prefecture Route 29 east – Shuri
243.3151.2Okinawa Prefecture Route 43 south – Tomari Wharf, Tsushima Maru Memorial Museum
243.9151.6Okinawa Prefecture Route 221 south / Okinawa Prefecture Route 222 east – Matsuo
244.3151.8  National Route 58 south (Naha West Road) – Wakasa, Naminoue Beach, Fukushūen Garden
Okinawa Prefecture Route 42 south – Okinawa Prefectural Office, Prefectural Office Station, Makishi Public Market, Kokusai Street
244.7152.0Okinawa Prefecture Route 47 north – Naminoue
245.0152.2    National Route 329 north / National Route 330 south / National Route 507 south (Tsubogawa-Ōdōri) – Yonabaru
  National Route 390 west (Sunshine-dōri) – Naha Wharf
Northern end of National Route 329 concurrency
245.3152.4   National Route 329 north (Naha-higashi Bypass) – to Okinawa Expressway, Yonabaru, Tomigusuku
  National Route 329 ends
    National Route 331 south / National Route 332 west – Itoman, Naha Airport
Southern terminus; southern end of National Route 329 concurrency, highway continues as National Routes 331 and 332
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "一般国道の路線別、都道府県別道路現況" [Road statistics by General National Highway route and prefecture] (PDF) (in Japanese). Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism. Retrieved 19 February 2020.
  2. ^ "身近な道路が実は"日本一"!?日本一の国道を走ろう!(その1)" [The familiar road is actually the best in Japan!? Let's drive on the best national road in Japan! (Part 1)]. On the Road (in Japanese). Toyo Tire Corporation. 29 October 2019. Retrieved 1 September 2020.
  3. ^ a b "一般国道の路線を指定する政令" [Cabinet Order Designating General National Routes]. Act of 1965 (in Japanese). Cabinet of Japan. Retrieved 1 September 2020 – via Wikisource.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h "一般国道58号 起点 鹿児島県鹿児島市 ~ 終点 沖縄県那覇市" [General National Highway 58 starting point, Kagoshima, Kagoshima Prefecture to ending point, Naha, Okinawa Prefecture] (in Japanese). Kyushu Highway Research Office. 2003. Retrieved 1 September 2020.
  5. ^ "一般国道224号   起点 鹿児島県枕崎市 ~ 終点 鹿児島県鹿児島市" [General National Highway 224 starting point, Makurazaki, Kagoshima Prefecture to ending point, Kagoshima, Kagoshima Prefecture]. 2003. Retrieved 1 September 2020.
  6. ^ "Okinawa Expressway and ETC". Okinawahai. 23 May 2016. Retrieved 1 September 2020.
  7. ^ a b c d Stephen Mansfield (25 June 2016). "Route 58: a drive through Okinawa's peculiar past". The Japan Times. Retrieved 1 September 2020.
  8. ^ a b "やんばる国道物語" [Story of the Yanbaru-kokudō] (in Japanese). Okinawa Northern National Road Office. 2008. Retrieved 1 September 2020.
  9. ^ a b "【国道トリビア】 国道の番号に欠番があるのはなぜ?" [National Highway Trivia. Why are some of the national highway numbers missing?]. Gazoo (in Japanese). Toyota Motor Corporation. 24 March 2019. Retrieved 1 September 2020. Cite has empty unknown parameter: |1= (help)
  10. ^ White Papers of Japan 1978-79. Japan Institute of International Affairs. 1980. p. 157.
  11. ^ Google (1 September 2020). "Route 58 in Kagoshima" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 1 September 2020.
  12. ^ Google (1 September 2020). "Route 58 on Tanegashima" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 1 September 2020.
  13. ^ Google (1 September 2020). "Route 58 on Amami Ōshima" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 1 September 2020.
  14. ^ Google (1 September 2020). "Route 58 on Okinawa" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 1 September 2020.

External linksEdit