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photo:Shuji Mihara

Honshu-Shikoku Bridge
Expressway Co., Ltd.
Shuji Mihara

In the last year, eleven years after its privatization, our company conducted sound management thanks to your understanding and support. On behalf of the Honshu-Shikoku Bridge Expressway Co., Ltd. (HSBE), I would like to extend our gratitude to all of you.

The traffic volume between Honshu and Shikoku as well as toll revenue have increased steadily, and the traffic volume of FY 2016 marked the record high for the fifth year in a row, about 42.233 million vehicles per year.

The Honshu-Shikoku Bridge Expressways are playing an important role by connecting Honshu and Shikoku through three routes. After the introduction of a new toll rate that complied with national standard level in April 2014, our expressways had become a part of a national expressway network in both name and reality and its role as main transportation arteries in the Seto Inland Sea region has been becoming increasingly important.

In the above situations, we, HSBE, established “Action Plan 2017-2018” in this April as a path that we should follow in our business operations over the next two years.

The plan is based on two aspects; one is to gain a “Trust” of the users by providing safe, secure and comfortable usability of our expressways, and the other is to tackle a “Challenge” to realize our bridges’ service life of more than 200 years.

As efforts on the “Trust”, we have completed the seismic retrofit works for long-span bridges in the Kobe-Awaji-Naruto Expressway by last year. We will work on the retrofit works for other bridges by accelerating the schedule to provide safe and secure transportation. Also, we will continuously work on enforcing Vehicles Regulations Order, preventing reverse-run vehicles, installing high-performance pavement and enhancing inspection for the road facilities, and we will achieve higher evaluation in the customer satisfaction survey in which we have received high evaluations.

As efforts on the “Challenge”, we have been striving to realize our bridges’ service life of more than 200 years, and taking efforts for the development of new inspection techniques such as infrared thermography and drone, and the establishment of efficient data utilization procedures for asset management.

Furthermore, we plan to renovate our Service and Parking Areas based on new concepts in order to expand the overall use of our expressways, and we try to make the Service and Parking Areas more attractive as “Tourist Destinations”.

In particular, as for the Seto-Ohashi Bridges and the Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge which celebrate their 30th and 20th anniversaries, respectively, we will spread the appeals of roadside areas and our expressways through the anniversary ceremonies and corresponding events in cooperation with the local communities and related corporations.

For “Setouchi Museum Network” as part of our Mecenat Activities, the number of museums on the network has increased to sixty-four recently, and the expansion of the network has contributed to the nationwide expansion of appeals of arts in the Seto Inland Sea region. Through the above activities, we will continue our efforts to increase the name recognition of the region and attract more users to our expressways.

Honshu-Shikoku Bridge Expressway Group will continue its efforts to fulfil corporate social responsibilities. On behalf of the Group, I respectfully ask for your continued support and understanding.

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