|• Revised Romanization||Uijeongbu-si|
Location in South Korea
|Administrative divisions||15 dong|
|• Total||81.59 km2 (31.50 sq mi)|
|Population (August 2016)|
|• Density||5,350.3/km2 (13,857/sq mi)|
Uijeongbu is located north of the Korean capital Seoul; it lies inside a defile, with mountains on two sides, and commands a natural choke point across the main traditional invasion route from the North into Seoul. As such it has a continued military significance and it contains U.S. and Korean military bases, positioned for the defense of the Korean capital. The U.S. Second Infantry Division has established a headquarters post in Uijeongbu, with the main troops being deployed from Dongducheon city.
Despite being known for its military presence, the area has boomed into a satellite community of Seoul with shops, cinemas, restaurants and bars, PC bangs and DVD Bangs. In addition to U.S. personnel, it is popular with the English hagwon (a for-profit private institute, academy or cram school). There are several mountains such as Mt. Dobong (Dobongsan), Mt. Surak and Mt. Soyo. The mountains are popular recreational areas for hiking and are frequented by residents living in the Seoul Metropolitan area.
This city is also famous for its budae jjigae (lit. "army base stew"), made with hot dogs and SPAM. In the late 20th century, many wanted the dish to be referred as Uijeongbu jjigae to remove the military or war-time connotations it had associated with it. However, not many restaurants followed this guideline. Some restaurants have begun calling their product Uijeongbu budae jjigae. The city also contains what locals refer to as "buddaejjigae street", a street where there is a high concentration of army base stew restaurants.
Uijeongbu is also served by the Seoul Metropolitan Subway's Line 1 and Line 7. The six stations within the city boundaries are Nogyang, Ganeung, Uijeongbu, Hoeryong, Mangwolsa, and Jangam. It takes around 40 minutes to reach Uijeongbu from central Seoul by subway.
Extensive bus routes cover north-eastern Gyeonggi-do. There are three basic kinds: Ilban Bus, normal bus; Jwaseok Bus, larger and slightly more expensive; and Maeul Bus, "village bus", a smaller bus with fewer seats. An intercity bus station is available for longer distances. Airport limousine buses run frequently to both Incheon and Gimpo airports.
The South Korean educational system, highly regarded as one of the best in the world, officially it incorporates Primary or Elementary, Middle, Secondary, Vocational and Tertiary levels. Anything below a primary school is not required. Uijeongbu is home to several educational establishments, most of which are available to both South Korean citizens and foreign nationals, some schools, however, are only accessible to the families, and otherwise, affiliates of the US Army. Most of the schools in Uijeongbu range from such as the standard Korean high school, Gyeonggi High School, to the more unique, Americanized, International Christian School which lies in the northern part of the city, close to Nogyang Station. Because of the presence of the United States Army Garrison, USAG, Red Cloud, a higher than average amount of American students is seen in the surrounding area. Earlier forms of education, such as kindergarten, are not compulsory in South Korea and tradition prefers to have young children with the family as long as possible but, many are still available. One such establishment is the privately run kindergarten, Yebbeun Kindergarten or Pretty Kindergarten, 예쁜유치원 which is located near Sae-mal Station. From the age of six, school children in Uijeongbu, like most of South Korea, begin attending 초등학교, chodeung haggyo, or elementary school. There are several elementary schools throughout Uijeongbu, such as 용현초등학교, Yonghyun primary school, or 방학초등학교, Vocational Elementary school so, a wide variety is provided. The next stage in schooling begins around the age of thirteen and is a part of middle school education. Uijeongbu has a few middle schools, such as 솔뫼중학교 Solm-oe Middle School, located in the southeastern part of the city, right off Route 43. The high school or secondary, level of education is widely available in Uijeongbu as well. With high schools like aforementioned, Gyeonggi High School,[better source needed] or Uijeongbu High School which is known for their unusual graduation "dress up" ritual. There is an apparent lack of vocational high school or those that focus on specialized curricula, such as fisheries or economics. However, there are several higher education options, at the tertiary level, available in Uijeongbu. One such school is the Shinhan University, which has an extensive array of choices, for majors, ranging from culinary to nursing. Uijeongbu is also the site of Kyungmin College which prepares teachers.
In popular culture
- In the TV series M*A*S*H, this city (then just a village) served as the home of the 4077th Mobile Army Surgical Hospital.
- Joey Lawrence's character on Melissa & Joey, Joe Longo, was born in an unspecified U.S. Army hospital in the city.
- "Ŭijŏngbu". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
- Kim, Violet "Food map: Eat your way around Korea" CNN Go. 6 April 2012. Retrieved 2012-04-12
- "Uijeongbu Light Rail Transit - Railway Technology". railway-technology.com. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
- Gyeonggi Science High School