Chiyoda (千代田区, Chiyoda-ku), also known as Chiyoda City in English, is a special ward located in central Tokyo, Japan. It consists of the Imperial Palace and a surrounding radius of about a kilometer. As of October 2020, the ward has a population of 66,680, and a population density of 5,709 people per km², making it by far the least populated of the special wards. The total area is 11.66 km², of which the Imperial Palace, Hibiya Park, National Museum of Modern Art, and Yasukuni Shrine take up approximately 2.6 km², or 22% of the total area.
Chiyoda is an economic powerhouse; the small area east of the palace in the districts of Otemachi, Marunouchi and Yurakucho (colloquially "Daimaruyu") houses the headquarters of 19 Fortune 500 companies, is the source of roughly 10% of the combined revenue of all Japanese companies, and produced the equivalent of around 1/4th of the GDP of the country in 2017. With a day population of around 850,000, its day/night population ratio is by far the highest of all municipalities in Japan.
At the tip of Musashino plateau, Chiyoda is located at the very heart of former Tokyo City in eastern mainland Tokyo. The central area of the ward is furthermore occupied by the Imperial Palace. The east side of the ward, bordering Chūō, is the location of Tokyo Station. The south side, bordering Minato, encompasses Hibiya Park and the National Diet Building. It is almost exclusively occupied by administrations and agencies. The west and northwest are primarily upper class residential; the Yasukuni Shrine is also there. The "high lantern" of Kudanzaka slope was not originally built as a lighthouse, but was built as a lantern for the Shrine. Originally steep and with steps, the slope was considerably softened during remediation after the Kanto earthquake. To the north and northeast of the ward are several residential neighborhoods and the Akihabara commercial district.
Politics and government
Chiyoda is run by a directly elected mayor and a city assembly of 25 elected members. The current mayor is Takaaki Higuchi.
For the Metropolitan Assembly, Chiyoda forms a single-member electoral district. It had been represented by Liberal Democrats for 50 years until the landslide 2009 election when then 26-year-old Democratic newcomer Zenkō Kurishita unseated 70-year-old former Metropolitan Assembly president and six term assemblyman, Liberal Democrat Shigeru Uchida. In the 2013 election, no Democrat contested the seat and Uchida won back the district against a Communist and two independents.
On December 31, 2001, Chiyoda had 6,572 buildings which were four stories or taller.
Some of the districts in Chiyoda are actually not inhabited, either because they are parks (Hibiya Koen), because they consist only of office buildings (Otemachi or Marunouchi), and/or because they are extremely small. The area on the eastern side of Akihabara Station is the location of several districts that cover at most a few buildings. Kanda-Hanaokachō is, for example, limited to the Akihabara Station and the Yodobashi Camera department store. Understanding the address system in the Kanda area can be particularly troublesome for non-locals.
Districts and neighborhoods
Kōjimachi Area (麹町地区), former Kōjimachi Ward (Kōjimachi-ku)
Kojimachi, a former merchant area along the Shinjuku-Dori avenue, upper-class residential with a couple of offices.
The Banchō area (nowadays consisting of six neighborhoods, from Ichibancho to Rokubanchō, and historically including Fujimi as well as the western sides of Kudanminami and Kudankita), an upper class residential area, home of the embassies of Belgium, Paraguay, Luxemburg, the UK, Israel and the Apostolic Nunciature.
Chiyoda - "1-1 Chiyoda, Chiyoda-ku" is the official address of the Imperial Palace
The list below consists of the many smaller neighborhoods of the Kanda area, for which a modernization of the addressing system has not been enforced yet except Kanda-Sarugakuchō and Kanda-Misakichō. All officially start with the prefix "Kanda-", but it is sometimes omitted in daily life. Note that Iwamotochō and Kanda-Iwamotochō are different districts (as is the case for Kajichō and Kanda-Kajichō)
As of 1 May 2003[update], Chiyoda has eight elementary schools, with 2,647 students, and five junior high schools with 1,123 students. Public elementary, junior high schools and Kudan Secondary School in Chiyoda are operated by the Chiyoda City (the Chiyoda Ward) Board of Education [ja]. Public high schools are operated by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Board of Education.
It was created in April 1993 (Heisei 5) as a merger of Chisakura Elementary School (千桜小学校) and Kanda Elementary School (神田小学校), and it also took a portion of the former boundary of Nagatatcho Elementary School (永田町小学校).
It was created in 1993 as the merger of Kinka Elementary School (錦華小学校), Nishikanda Elementary School (西神田小学), and Ogawa Elementary School (小川小学校). The Kinka building became the Ochanomizu Elementary building.
Shohei Elementary School (昌平小学校) - Sotokanda [ja]
It was established in 1993. It is on the site of the former Horin Elementary School (芳林小学校). It was initially held in the previous Awaji Elementary School (淡路小学校) before its current building opened in 1996.
Chiyoda operates four public libraries; they are the Chiyoda Library, Yobancho Library, Shohei Library, and Kanda Library. Tokyo operates the Tokyo Metropolitan Library Hibiya Library. The Japanese government operates the National Diet Library and the National Archives. Ishikawa Enterprise Foundation Ochanomizu Library is a nearby private library.
Parks and recreation
Chidorigafuchi in Chiyoda
East Imperial Garden, located on the eastern portion of the Tokyo Imperial Palace grounds and housing the castle tower and the outer defense positions of the former Edo Castle, opened to the public in 1968. Kitanomaru Park, located on Edo Castle's former northern section, has the Tokyo National Museum of Modern Art and the Nippon Budokan, a venue for performances. Chidorigafuchi Boat Arena and Chidorigafuchi Moat Path includes a waterway for boats. National Diet Building Park, located adjacent to the Diet Building and divided in two by a street, includes American dogwoods planted to symbolize the relations between the United States and Japan. Hibiya Park, Japan's first western-style park, includes restaurants, open-air concert halls, and tennis courts. Imperial Palace Outer Garden, in the front of Nijubashi Bridge, serves as a jogging trail and a tourist site.