List of metropolitan areas in Japan by population

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This table contains lists of Japanese metropolitan areas (都市圏), as defined by the Statistics Bureau of Japan (SBJ) and the Center for Spatial Information Service of the University of Tokyo. The lists include the prefectures containing the region, the population of the region, and the central cities of each region. The region containing most of the people in Japan between Tokyo and Fukuoka is often called the Taiheiyo Belt.

Usage note: Metropolitan area populations are often controversial and the methods used to calculate them vary from country to country and source to source, so great care should be taken when comparing the figures in this table with figures for any other country. Meaningful comparisons of metropolitan area population figures can only be made if the methods used to determine each figure are consistent.

Population Census[edit]

Kantō MMA
Keihanshin Major Metropolitan Area

The Statistics Bureau of Japan (SBJ) defines a metropolitan area as one or more central cities and its associated outlying municipalities. To qualify as an outlying municipality, the municipality must have at least 1.5% of its resident population aged 15 and above commuting to school or work into one of the central cities. To qualify as a central city, a city must either be a designated city of any population or a non-designated city with a city proper population of at least 500,000. Metropolitan areas of designated cities are defined as "major metropolitan areas" (大都市圏) while those of non-designated cities are simply "metropolitan areas" (都市圏). If multiple central cities are close enough such that their outlying cities overlap, they are combined together and a single metropolitan area is defined rather than independently.

The metropolitan areas written in bold are the 11 major metropolitan areas of Japan.

  • 2010
  • MMA : Major Metropolitan Area
  • MA : Metropolitan Area
  • Source: Statistics Bureau of Japan[1]
Rank Area Prefecture Central City Area Population
01 Kantō MMA Tokyo, Kanagawa Prefecture, Saitama Prefecture, Chiba Prefecture, Ibaraki Prefecture, Tochigi Prefecture, Gunma Prefecture, Yamanashi Prefecture 23 special wards area, Yokohama, Sagamihara, Kawasaki, Chiba, Saitama 36,923,193
02 Keihanshin MMA Osaka Prefecture, Kyoto Prefecture, Hyōgo Prefecture, Nara Prefecture, Shiga Prefecture, Wakayama Prefecture Osaka, Sakai, Kobe, Kyoto 19,341,976
03 Chūkyō MMA Aichi Prefecture, Gifu Prefecture, Mie Prefecture Nagoya 9,107,414
04 Kitakyūshū-Fukuoka MMA Fukuoka Prefecture Fukuoka, Kitakyushu 5,515,427
05 Shizuoka-Hamamatsu MMA Shizuoka Prefecture Shizuoka, Hamamatsu 2,741,028
06 Sapporo MMA Ishikari Subprefecture in Hokkaidō Sapporo 2,584,880
07 Sendai MMA Miyagi Prefecture Sendai 2,169,757
08 Hiroshima MMA Hiroshima Prefecture Hiroshima 2,099,514
09 Utsunomiya MA Tochigi Prefecture Utsunomiya 1,086,898
10 Okayama MMA Okayama Prefecture Okayama 1,647,892
11 Kumamoto MMA Kumamoto Prefecture Kumamoto 1,476,435
12 Niigata MMA Niigata Prefecture Niigata 1,421,694
13 Kagoshima MA Kagoshima Prefecture Kagoshima 1,152,748
14 Matsuyama MA Ehime Prefecture Matsuyama 717,687

Changes from 2005 census The following changes to metropolitan area definitions were made in the 2010 Census report.[2]

  • New central cities in Kantō and Keihanshin major metropolitan areas
    • Sagamihara in the Kantō MMA and Sakai in the Keihanshin MMA have become designated cities in 2010 and 2006 respectively. These cities are already well within their MMAs and should not greatly alter their formation.
  • Niigata and Okayama major metropolitan areas
    • Niigata became a designated city in 2007 and Okayama became a designated city in 2009. These cities therefore formed major metropolitan areas in the 2010 census.
  • Shizuoka, Hamamatsu major metropolitan area
    • Hamamatsu also became a designated city in 2007. As its outlying areas overlap with Shizuoka, the two cities formed a single major metropolitan area in the 2010 census.
  • Utsunomiya metropolitan area
    • Utsunomiya qualified as a central city for the 2010 census, resulting from mergers with neighboring municipalities and subsequent population growth.

2005 Population Census[edit]

The metropolitan areas written in bold are the 8 major metropolitan areas of Japan.

  • Oct. 1st, 2005
  • MMA : Major Metropolitan Area
  • MA : Metropolitan Area
  • Source: Statistics Bureau of Japan[3]
Rank Area Prefecture Central City Area Population
01 Kantō MMA Tokyo, Kanagawa Prefecture, Saitama Prefecture, Chiba Prefecture, Ibaraki Prefecture, Tochigi Prefecture, Gunma Prefecture, Yamanashi Prefecture 23 special wards area, Yokohama, Kawasaki, Chiba, Saitama 35,682,460
02 Keihanshin MMA Osaka Prefecture, Kyoto Prefecture, Hyōgo Prefecture, Nara Prefecture, Shiga Prefecture, Wakayama Prefecture Osaka, Kobe, Kyoto 18,768,395
03 Chūkyō MMA Aichi Prefecture, Gifu Prefecture, Mie Prefecture Nagoya 8,923,445
04 Kitakyūshū-Fukuoka MMA Fukuoka Prefecture Fukuoka, Kitakyushu 5,590,378
05 Sapporo MMA Ishikari Subprefecture in Hokkaidō Sapporo 2,606,214
06 Sendai MMA Miyagi Prefecture Sendai 2,289,656
07 Hiroshima MMA Hiroshima Prefecture Hiroshima 2,064,536
08 Okayama MMA Okayama Prefecture Okayama 1,646,757
09 Kumamoto MA Kumamoto Prefecture Kumamoto 1,462,409
10 Niigata MMA Niigata Prefecture Niigata 1,442,958
11 Shizuoka MMA Shizuoka Prefecture Shizuoka 1,427,107
12 Hamamatsu MA Shizuoka Prefecture Hamamatsu 1,304,548
13 Kagoshima MA Kagoshima Prefecture Kagoshima 1,132,106
14 Matsuyama MA Ehime Prefecture Matsuyama 724,048

Urban Employment Area[edit]

Metropolitan Employment Areas in Taiheiyo Belt
Tokyo MEA
  Kobe MEA,   Osaka MEA,
  Kyoto MEA,   Nagoya MEA

Urban Employment Area is another definition of metropolitan areas, defined by the Center for Spatial Information Service, the University of Tokyo. The Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry defined 233 areas for the UEAs of Japan.

  • 2010 standards
  • MEA : Metropolitan Employment Area
  • Source : Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan,[4] Center for Spatial Information Science, the University of Tokyo[5]
2010 Standards
Metropolitan area Central city Prefecture Area
(km2)
GDP (bn JPY) Population
2010 2005 1995 1980 1965
Tokyo MEA Special wards of Tokyo, Saitama, Chiba, Tachikawa, Musashino, Yokohama, Kawasaki, Atsugi Ibaraki, Saitama, Chiba, Tokyo, Kanagawa, Yamanashi 10,404 157,820 34,834,167 33,652,998 31,707,138 27,853,640 20,156,066
Osaka MEA Osaka, Sakai, Higashiōsaka, Kadoma, Moriguchi Kyoto, Osaka, Hyogo, Nara, Wakayama 4,291 45,362 12,273,041 12,208,161 12,039,181 11,365,385 8,721,257
Nagoya MEA Nagoya, Komaki Gifu, Aichi, Mie 2,792 22,497 5,490,453 5,385,383 5,151,367 4,713,287 3,708,670
Kyoto MEA Kyoto Shiga, Kyoto 2,836 10,117 2,679,094 2,653,421 2,582,733 2,395,626 1,897,517
Fukuoka MEA Fukuoka Fukuoka 1,283 8,922 2,495,552 2,409,904 2,196,463 1,768,587 1,165,151
Kobe MEA Kobe Hyogo 1,245 8,427 2,431,076 2,417,914 2,309,076 2,130,237 1,697,644
Sapporo MEA Sapporo, Otaru Ishikari Subprefecture, Shiribeshi Subprefecture in Hokkaido 3,205 7,438 2,341,599 2,325,653 2,198,255 1,798,624 1,151,946
Sendai MEA Sendai Miyagi 2,077 5,414 1,574,942 1,549,746 1,466,989 1,202,186 850,828
Okayama MEA Okayama Okayama 2,710 5,539 1,532,146 1,523,286 1,486,785 1,391,802 1,112,534
Maebashi MEA Maebashi, Takasaki, Isesaki Gunma 2,653 5,252 1,453,528 1,459,895 1,439,840 1,327,539 1,142,579
Hiroshima MEA Hiroshima Hiroshima 1,811 5,414 1,411,848 1,395,530 1,358,060 1,197,465 838,010
Kitakyushu MEA Kitakyushu Fukuoka 1,222 4,889 1,370,169 1,392,145 1,429,463 1,459,479 1,397,618
Hamamatsu MEA Hamamatsu Shizuoka 2,051 4,763 1,133,879 1,139,189 1,086,360 972,356 818,902
Utsunomiya MEA Utsunomiya Tochigi 3,851 4,454 1,120,057 1,121,696 1,093,966 973,728 817,786
Kumamoto MEA Kumamoto Kumamoto 1,604 3,490 1,102,398 1,089,366 1,053,231 924,422 795,803
Niigata MEA Niigata Niigata 2,138 3,805 1,071,152 1,082,159 1,073,394 1,002,106 875,150
Shizuoka MEA Shizuoka Shizuoka 1,677 4,024 1,001,597 1,008,368 1,016,145 966,153 808,584

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Statistics Bureau of Japan, 2010 Census Final Data
  2. ^ Statistics Bureau of Japan
  3. ^ Statistics Bureau of Japan, 2005 Census Final Data
  4. ^ "地域経済の将来動向分析に関する調査研究" [Survey on the future trend analysis of the regional economy] (in Japanese). Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan. Retrieved 2017-04-15. 
  5. ^ "Metropolitan Employment Area (MEA) Data". Center for Spatial Information Science, the University of Tokyo. Retrieved 2017-04-15. 

External links[edit]