Monday, March 22, 2010

JAPAN - Tokyo bay

JAPAN stamps

Location of TOKYO in Japan

Tokyo is the capital and largest city of Japan, and is one of the 47 prefectures of Japan. It is located on the eastern side of the main island Honshū. Tokyo's government also administers the twenty-three special wards of Tokyo, each governed as a city, that cover the area that was once the city of Tokyo in the eastern part of the prefecture.

The population of the special wards is over 8 million people, with the total population of the prefecture exceeding 12 million. The prefecture is the center of the Greater Tokyo Area, the world's most populous metropolitan area with 35 to 39 million people (depending on definition) and the world's largest metropolitan economy with a GDP of US$1.479 trillion at purchasing power parity in 2008.

Tokyo was described by Saskia Sassen as one of the three "command centers" for the world economy, along with New York City and London.

Tokyo is the seat of the Japanese government and the Imperial Palace, and the home of the Japanese Imperial Family.

Tokyo Bay is surrounded by the Boso Peninsula (Chiba Prefecture) to the east and the Miura Peninsula (Kanagawa Prefecture) to the west. In a narrow sense, Tokyo Bay is the area north of the straight line formed by the Cape Kannon on the Miura Peninsula on one end and Cape Futtsu on the Boso Peninsula on the other end. This area covers about 922 km². Tokyo Bay in a broad sense includes also the Uraga Channel. The total area would then be 1320 km².

Tokyo Bay includes about 249 km² of reclaimed land area.

The only natural island in the Bay is Monkey Island, Yokosuka, Kanagawa. There are however many artificial islands that were built as naval fortification during the Meiji and Taishō period.

The Rainbow Bridge is a suspension bridge crossing northern Tokyo Bay between Shibaura Pier and the Odaiba waterfront development in Minato, Tokyo, Japan.

Construction started in 1987 and was completed in 1993. The bridge is 798 metres (2,618 ft) long with a main span of 580 metres (1,903 ft). Officially called the "Shuto Expressway No. 11 Daiba Route - Port of Tokyo Connector Bridge," the name "'Rainbow Bridge" was decided by the public.

The towers supporting the bridge are white in color, designed to harmonize with the skyline of central Tokyo seen from Odaiba. There are lamps placed on the wires supporting the bridge, which are illuminated into three different colors, red, white and green every night using solar energy obtained during the day.

The bridge can be accessed by foot from Tamachi Station (JR East) or Shibaura-futō StationYurikamome) on the mainland side.


Postcard sent by Masayo, as "MASAYO"
Private swap - Reference JP002

Aerial view of the Tokyo bay area and the Rainbow Bridge

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