| Administrative divisions|
A city (市, shi) is a local administrative unit in Japan. Cities are ranked on the same level as towns (町, machi) and villages (村, mura), with the difference that they are not a component of districts (郡, gun). Like other contemporary administrative units, they are defined by the Local Autonomy Law of 1947.
Article 8 of the Local Autonomy Law sets the following conditions for a municipality to be designated as a city:
The designation is approved by the prefectural governor and the Minister for Internal Affairs and Communications.
A city can theoretically be demoted to a town or village when it fails to meet any of these conditions, but such a demotion has not happened to date. The least populous city, Utashinai, Hokkaido, has a population of three thousand, while a town in the same prefecture, Otofuke, Hokkaido, has over forty thousand.
Under the Act on Special Provisions concerning Merger of Municipalities (市町村の合併の特例等に関する法律, Act No. 59 of 2004), the standard of 50,000 inhabitants for the city status has been eased to 30,000 if such population is gained as a result of a merger of towns and/or villages, in order to facilitate such mergers to reduce administrative costs. Many municipalities gained city status under this eased standard. On the other hand, the municipalities recently gained the city status purely as a result of increase of population without expansion of area are limited to those listed in List of former towns or villages gained city status alone in Japan.
The Cabinet of Japan can designate cities of at least 200,000 inhabitants to have the status of core city, or designated city. These statuses expand the scope of administrative authority delegated from the prefectural government to the city government.
Tokyo, Japan's capital, existed as a city until 1943, but is now legally classified as a special type of prefecture called a metropolis (都, to). The 23 special wards of Tokyo, which constitute the core of the Tokyo metropolitan area, each have an administrative status analogous to that of cities. Tokyo also has several other incorporated cities, towns and villages within its jurisdiction.
Cities were introduced under the "city code" (shisei, 市制) of 1888during the "Great Meiji mergers" (Meiji no daigappei, 明治の大合併) of 1889. The -shi replaced the previous urban districts/"wards/cities" (-ku) that had existed as primary subdivisions of prefectures besides rural districts (-gun) since 1878. Initially, there were 39 cities in 1889: only one in most prefectures, two in a few (Yamagata, Toyama, Osaka, Hyōgo, Fukuoka), and none in some – Miyazaki became the last prefecture to contain its first city in 1924. In Okinawa-ken and Hokkai-dō which were not yet fully equal prefectures in the Empire, major urban settlements remained organized as urban districts until the 1920s: Naha-ku and Shuri-ku, the two urban districts of Okinawa were only turned into Naha-shi and Shuri-shi in May 1921, and six -ku of Hokkaidō were converted into district-independent cities in August 1922.
By 1945, the number of cities countrywide had increased to 205. After WWII, their number almost doubled during the "great Shōwa mergers" of the 1950s and continued to grow so that it surpassed the number of towns in the early 21st century (see the List of mergers and dissolutions of municipalities in Japan).As of October 1 2018, there are 792 cities of Japan.
Japan is divided into 47 prefectures, forming the country's first level of jurisdiction and administrative division. They include 43 prefectures proper, two urban prefectures, one "circuit" or "territory" and one "metropolis". In 1868, the Meiji Fuhanken sanchisei administration created the first prefectures to replace the urban and rural administrators in the parts of the country previously controlled directly by the shogunate and a few territories of rebels/shogunate loyalists who had not submitted to the new government such as Aizu/Wakamatsu. In 1871, all remaining feudal domains (han) were also transformed into prefectures, so that prefectures subdivided the whole country. In several waves of territorial consolidation, today's 47 prefectures were formed by the turn of the century. In many instances, these are contiguous with the ancient ritsuryō provinces of Japan.
The district is today a geographical and statistical unit comprising one or several rural municipalities in Japan. It was used as an administrative unit in Japan in antiquity and between 1878 and 1921 and was roughly equivalent to the county of the United States, ranking at the level below prefecture and above town or village, same as city.
Special wards are a special form of municipalities in Japan under the 1947 Local Autonomy Law. They are city-level wards: primary subdivisions of a prefecture with municipal autonomy largely comparable to other forms of municipalities.
Tatsuno is a city in Hyōgo Prefecture, Japan. The city was founded on April 1, 1951.
Komae is a city located in the western portion of Tokyo Metropolis, Japan. It is one of 30 municipalities in the western portion of Tokyo known as the Tama Area. As of 1 February 2016, the city had an estimated population of 80,464, and a population density of 12,000 persons per km². Its total area is 6.39 square kilometres (2.47 sq mi). It is the smallest administrative city in Tokyo Meotropolis both in area and population, and the second smallest in terms of area in the nation.
A city designated by government ordinance, also known as a designated city or government ordinance city, is a Japanese city that has a population greater than 500,000 and has been designated as such by order of the Cabinet of Japan under Article 252, Section 19 of the Local Autonomy Law.
The Japanese addressing system is used to identify a specific location in Japan. When written in Japanese characters, addresses start with the largest geographical entity and proceed to the most specific one. When written in Latin characters, addresses follow the convention used by most Western addresses and start with the smallest geographic entity and proceed to the largest. The Japanese system is complex and idiosyncratic, the product of the natural growth of urban areas, as opposed to the systems used in cities that are laid out as grids and divided into quadrants or districts.
Japan has three levels of government: national, prefectural, and municipal. The nation is divided into 47 prefectures. Each prefecture consists of numerous municipalities, with 1,719 in total. There are four types of municipalities in Japan: cities, towns, villages and special wards. In Japanese, this system is known as shikuchōson (市区町村), where each kanji in the word represents one of the four types of municipalities. Some designated cities also have further administrative subdivisions, also known as wards. But, unlike the Special wards of Tokyo, these wards are not municipalities.
Tokyo City was a municipality in Japan and part of Tokyo-fu which existed from 1 May 1889 until its merger with its prefecture on 1 July 1943. The historical boundaries of Tokyo City are now occupied by the 23 Special Wards of Tokyo. The new merged government became what is now Tokyo, also known as the Tokyo Metropolis, or, ambiguously, Tokyo Prefecture.
Tokyo Prefecture was a Japanese government entity that existed between 1868 and 1943.
Ibi District is a district located in Gifu Prefecture, Japan. As of July 2011, the district has an estimated population of 72,109. The total area is 876.65 km².
Municipal mergers and dissolutions carried out in Japan can take place within one municipality or between multiple municipalities and are required to be based upon consensus.
Japanese place names include names for geographic features, present and former administrative divisions, transportation facilities such as railroad stations, and historic sites in Japan. The article Japanese addressing system contains related information on postal addresses.
The bureaucratic administration of Japan is divided into three basic levels; national, prefectural, and municipal. Below the national government there are 47 prefectures, six of which are further subdivided into subprefectures to better service large geographical areas or remote islands. The municipalities are the lowest level of government; the twenty most-populated cities outside Tokyo Metropolis are known as designated cities and are subdivided into wards.
Same-sex marriage is not recognized in Japan. As of 1 February 2021, 73 municipalities and three prefectures issue same-sex partnership certificates which provide some benefits but do not offer any legal recognition. Most polls conducted since 2013 have found that a majority of Japanese people support the legalization of same-sex marriage or partnerships, and a 2018 poll found it supported by an overwhelming majority of those under age 60.
Ishigaki is a city in Okinawa Prefecture, Japan. It includes Ishigaki island and the disputed Senkaku Islands territory. The city is the political, cultural, and economic center of the Yaeyama Islands. New Ishigaki Airport serves the city.
The politics of Tokyo City, as the capital of the Empire of Japan, took place under special regulations that limited its local autonomy compared to other municipalities in Japan. In 1943, the city's independent institutions were eliminated altogether under the authoritarian Tōjō cabinet and the administration was absorbed by the appointed government of Tokyo prefecture.
The Osaka Metropolis plan or Osaka Metropolis was a plan to transform Osaka Prefecture from a fu, an urban prefecture, into a to, a metropolis. Under the initially envisioned plan, Osaka city, Sakai city, and other surrounding cities in Osaka prefecture, were to be dissolved and – similarly to Tokyo urban wards within Tokyo – subdivided into special wards that have a status as municipalities but leave some municipal tasks and revenues to the prefectural administration. As political resistance grew, notably the opposition to the plan in Sakai city expressed in the 2013 mayoral election, the concrete plan was reduced to, at least as a first step, abolish only Osaka city. As in Tokyo, the metropolis would have continued to include all other municipalities of the prefecture and serve as prefectural government for them.