Tokyo (東京 Tōkyō, English: , Japanese: [toːkʲoː] (listen); lit. "Eastern Capital"), officially Tokyo Metropolis (東京都 Tōkyō-to), one of the 47 prefectures of Japan, has served as the Japanese capital since 1869. , the Greater Tokyo Area ranked as the most populous metropolitan area in the world. The urban area houses the seat of the Emperor of Japan, of the Japanese government and of the National Diet. Tokyo forms part of the Kantō region on the southeastern side of Japan's main island, Honshu, and includes the Izu Islands and Ogasawara Islands. Tokyo was formerly named Edo when Shōgun Tokugawa Ieyasu made the city his headquarters in 1603. It became the capital after Emperor Meiji moved his seat to the city from Kyoto in 1868; at that time Edo was renamed Tokyo. Tokyo Metropolis formed in 1943 from the merger of the former Tokyo Prefecture (東京府 Tōkyō-fu) and the city of Tokyo (東京市 Tōkyō-shi). Tokyo is often referred to as a city but is officially known and governed as a "metropolitan prefecture", which differs from and combines elements of a city and a prefecture, a characteristic unique to Tokyo.
The 23 Special Wards of Tokyo were formerly Tokyo City. On July 1, 1943, it merged with Tokyo Prefecture and became Tokyo Metropolis with an additional 26 municipalities in the western part of the prefecture, and the Izu islands and Ogasawara islands south of Tokyo. As of October 1, 2015, the population of Tokyo is estimated to be over 13.4 million, or about 11% of Japan’s total population. The latest estimate in 2019 shows the growing population of Tokyo with 13.9 million people, with the special wards 9.6 million, the Tama area 4.2 million, and the Islands 25,147. The prefecture is part of the world's most populous metropolitan area called the Greater Tokyo Area with over 38 million people and the world's largest urban agglomeration economy. , Tokyo hosted 51 of the Fortune Global 500 companies, the highest number of any city in the world at that time. Tokyo ranked third (twice) in the International Financial Centres Development Index. The city is home to various television networks such as Fuji TV, Tokyo MX, TV Tokyo, TV Asahi, Nippon Television, NHK and the Tokyo Broadcasting System.
is a communications
and observation tower
located in Shiba Park
. At 333 meters (1,091 ft), it is the tallest self-supporting steel structure in the world and the tallest artificial structure in Japan. The structure is an Eiffel Tower
-inspired lattice tower
that is painted white and international orange
to comply with air safety
regulations. Built in 1958, the tower's main sources of revenue are tourism and antenna leasing. Over 150 million people have visited the tower since its opening. FootTown, a 4-story building located directly under the tower, houses museums, restaurants and shops. Departing from here, guests can visit two observation decks. The 2-story Main Observatory is located at 150 meters (490 ft), while the smaller Special Observatory reaches a height of 250 meters (820 ft). The tower acts as a support structure for an antenna. Originally intended for television broadcasting, radio antennas were installed in 1961 and the tower is now used to broadcast both signals for Japanese media outlets such as NHK
and Fuji TV
. Japan's planned switch from analog to digital for all television broadcasting by July 2011 is problematic, however. Tokyo Tower's current height is not high enough to adequately support complete terrestrial digital broadcasting
to the area. A taller digital broadcasting tower known as Tokyo Sky Tree
was completed on February 29, 2012.
The skyline of Akasaka, a district of Tokyo located in Minato ward.
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Administrative divisions of Tokyo