Osaka Station (大阪駅, Ōsaka-eki) is a major railway station in Osaka's Umeda district (also known as Kita) that is served by a large number of local and interregional trains, but not the shinkansen which stop at Shin-Osaka Station. The formerly dark and cramped station underwent extensive renovation works and was reborn in 2011 as Osaka Station City, one of Japan's most attractive railway stations.
Osaka Station City's landmark is a large glass roof that spans over the railway tracks and gives the station a lot of new open space. Newly constructed and renovated buildings on the north and south sides of the station provide travelers with a wide array of shopping, dining, entertainment and recreation opportunities, and are connected with each other by a wide bridge over the railway tracks.
The bridge that connects the north and south buildings is called Toki no Hiroba (Time and Space Plaza) and provides a pleasant open space above the railway tracks for travelers to move from one side of the station to the other, take a rest or observe trains. From the level just below the plaza, travelers can access the railway tracks.
North Gate Building
Newly constructed and opened in May 2011, the North Gate Building contains a shopping center, multi screen cinema complex, sports club and multiple attractive green spaces:
Shopping: 10:00 to 21:00 Restaurants: 11:00 to 23:00
The Lucua shopping complex occupies the bulk of the North Gate Building, featuring hundreds of specialty shops for the fashion and trend conscious on a dozen floors. The complex also offers a wide variety of restaurants on the top floor and in the basement.
Yawaragi no Niwa and Kaze no Hiroba
The Yawaragi no Niwa (Healing Garden) and Kaze no Hiroba (Wind Plaza) are two terraces on the 10th and 11th floor of the North Gate Building that offer small green spaces, views over northern Osaka and a few benches for taking a break.
Tenku no Noen
Tenku no Noen (Sky Farm) is a unique green space on the roof of the North Gate Building where various vegetables and fruits are grown. The rooftop is reached via multiple stairs from the 11th floor (no elevator or escalator is available), where benches and tables are provided for taking a break.
South Gate Building
Partly new, partly renovated, the South Gate Building contains a department store, the Hotel Granvia Osaka, a clinic and a little bit of recreational space.
Daimaru Department Store
Shopping: 10:00 to 20:30 (some floors until 21:00) Restaurants: 11:00 to 23:00
The floor space of the Daimaru was greatly increased with the renovation and enlargement of the South Gate Building and now occupies 17 floors that offer a wide variety of goods and services, including a Pokemon Center, Uniqlo and Tokyu Hands branches and a restaurant floor.
Taiyo no Hiroba
Located on three terraces on the 15th, 16th and 17th floors on the south side of the South Gate Building, the Taiyo no Hiroba (Sun Plaza) receives sun during most of the day. It offers a few benches, a patio restaurant and views onto the high rise buildings of the Umeda district.
The Osaka/Umeda station complex is the busiest in western Japan, shared by four different railway companies. It consists of multiple separate stations:
Osaka Station (Japan Railways)
Hankyu Umeda Station (Hankyu Railways)
Hanshin Umeda Station (Hanshin Railways)
Umeda Station (Midosuji Subway Line)
Nishi-Umeda Station (Yotsubashi Subway Line)
Higashi-Umeda Station (Tanimachi Subway Line)
From Shin-Osaka Station
4 minutes, 160 yen by frequently departing JR trains. Alternatively, the Midosuji Subway Line takes 6 minutes and costs 230 yen.
From Namba Station
8 minutes, 230 yen by Midosuji or Yotsubashi Subway Line.