Toyama | Japan

Toyama (富山市 Toyama-shi, Japanese: [toꜜjama]) is the capital city of Toyama Prefecture, Japan, located on the coast of the Sea of Japan in the Chūbu region on central Honshū, about 200 km (120 mi) north of the city of Nagoya and 300 km (190 mi) northwest of Tokyo. As of 28 February 2018, the city had an estimated population of 417,878 in 176,643 households, and a population density of 337 persons per km2. Its total area was 1,241.77 square kilometres (479.45 sq mi).

The city has been designated an environmental model city by the national government for its efforts to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases.

The area of present-day Toyama city was part of ancient Etchū Province. The Toyama Plain is good farmland and historically it was a point of strategic and traffic importance since prehistoric times. During the Sengoku period, it was frequently a battlefield, coming under the control of warlord Sassa Narimasa, who built a castle town around Toyama Castle and channeled rivers to bringing about a flourishing agricultural industry. The area subsequently became part of Kaga Domain under the Maeda clan during the Edo period, during which time a positive industrial promotion policy was implemented on the production of Chinese medicine and washi (Japanese paper). Also, thanks to the improvement of kitamaebune sea transportation routes, these industries thrived and Toyama became known nationwide as the province of medicine.

Toyama has 65 public elementary schools and 26 public middle schools operated by the city government. There is also one public elementary school and one public middle school operated by the national government. The city has fourteen public high schools operated by the Toyama Prefectural Board of Education. and one public combined middle/high school operated by the national government. There are also seven private high schools

Since the Tokugawa period (1600–1867), this corridor has been critical in linking Tokyo, Kyoto, and Osaka. One of old Japan's most important ancient roadways, the Tōkaidō, ran through it connecting Tokyo (at that time called Edo) and Kyoto, the old imperial capital. In the twentieth century, it became the route for new super-express highways and high-speed railroad lines (shinkansen). The area consists of Aichi, Mie, Shizuoka,and southern Gifu prefectures.

A number of small alluvial plains are found in the corridor section. A mild climate, favorable location relatively close to the great metropolitan complexes, and availability of fast transportation have made this area a center for truck-gardening and out-of-season vegetables. Upland areas of rolling hills are extensively given over to the growing of mandarin oranges and tea. Nagoya, which faces Ise Bay, is a center for heavy industry, including iron and steel and machinery manufacturing. The corridor also has a number of small but important industrial centers. The western part of Tōkai includes the Nōbi Plain, where rice was being grown by the seventh century.

The Hokuriku region lies on the Sea of Japan coastline, northwest of the massive mountains that comprise Kōshin'etsu. Hokuriku includes the four prefectures of Ishikawa, Fukui, Niigata and Toyama,

The district has very heavy snowfall (sometimes enough to block major roads) and strong winds in winter, and its turbulent rivers are the source of abundant hydroelectric power. Niigata Prefecture is the site of domestic gas and oil production as well. Industrial development is extensive, especially in the cities in Niigata and Toyama; Fukui and Ishikawa prefectures also have large manufacturing industries.

Historically, Hokuriku's development is owed to markets in the Kansai region, however recently the urban areas at the heart of the Kantō region and Tōkai region are having a heavy an influence as well. Hokuriku has port facilities which are mainly to facilitate trade with Russia, Korea and China. Transportation between Niigata and Toyama used to be geographically limited and so Niigata has seen especially strong influence from the Kantō region, because of this Niigata Prefecture is often classified as being part of the Kōshin'etsu region with Nagano and Yamanashi Prefectures.

Kansai is known for its food, especially Osaka, as supported by the saying "Kyotoites are ruined by overspending on clothing, Osakans are ruined by overspending on food" (京の着倒れ、大阪の食い倒れ Kyō no Kidaore, Ōsaka no Kuidaore). Popular Osakan dishes include takoyaki, okonomiyaki, kitsune udon and kushikatsu. Kyoto is considered a mecca of traditional Japanese cuisine like kaiseki. Kansai has many wagyu brands such as Kobe beef and Tajima cattle from Hyōgo, Matsusaka beef from Mie and Omi beef from Shiga. Sake is another specialty of the region, the areas of Nada-Gogō and Fushimi produce 45% of all sake in Japan. As opposed to food from Eastern Japan, food in the Kansai area tends to be sweeter, and foods such as nattō tend to be less popular.

The dialects of the people from the Kansai region, commonly called Kansai-ben, have their own variations of pronunciation, vocabulary, and grammar. Kansai-ben is the group of dialects spoken in the Kansai area, but is often treated as a dialect in its own right.

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