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Location of Gotemba in Shizuoka Prefecture
|• - Mayor||Kaizō Osada|
|• Total||194.63 km2 (75.15 sq mi)|
|Population (September 2014)|
|• Density||453/km2 (1,170/sq mi)|
|Time zone||Japan Standard Time (UTC+9)|
|- Tree||Japanese zelkova|
|- Bird||Japanese Thrush|
|Address||483 Hagiwara, Gotemba-shi, Shizuoka-ken 412-8601|
Located in far eastern Shizuoka Prefecture at an altitude of 250–600 metres (820–1,970 ft), Gotemba has a cool climate, characterized by high rainfall (average 3,433 millimetres [135.2 in] per year).
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Gotemba was the site of a shōen belonging to Ise Shrine in the Heian period. During the Edo period the area was part of Odawara Domain. After the start of the Meiji period, it became part of Shizuoka Domain until the abolition of the han system in 1871 and the establishment of Shizuoka Prefecture. The opening of Gotemba Station on what was then the Tōkaidō Main Line on February 1, 1889 spurred development of the area. In the cadastral reform of April 1, 1889 Gotemba Town was created within Suntō District, along with Fujioka Village, Harasato Village, Ino Village, Tamaho Village, and Takane Village.
However, the opening of the Tanna Tunnel on December 1, 1934 resulted in the route of Tōkaidō Main Line shifting south to Atami, leaving Gotemba on the spur Gotemba Line, which resulted in temporary depopulation. During the pre-war era, Gotemba was a major base area for the Imperial Japanese Army, and still houses military facilities and a large training area for the modern Japanese Ground Self-Defense Force and the United States Marine Corps.
Gotemba was elevated to city status on February 11, 1955 through the merger of Gotemba Town with neighboring Fujioka Village, Harasato Village, Ino Village, and Tamaho Village. The city expanded through annexation of Takane Village on January 1, 1956 and the Furusawa District of Oyama Town on September 1, 1957. The Gotemba Interchange on the Tōmei Expressway was completed on May 25, 1969.
Gotemba has a mixed economy. Agriculture has traditionally been dominated by rice, irrigated by water from Mount Fuji, and has been supplemented by the growing of various green vegetables and the raising of pigs. Development of light industries, especially in food processing and electronics has profited through Gotemba's location on the Tōmei Expressway, and Gotemba is noted for a number of golf courses and a spacious outlet shopping center.
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Notable people from Gotemba
Media related to Gotemba, Shizuoka at Wikimedia Commons