Introducing MAEBASHI


Maebashi-shi The City of Maebashi lies at the southern base of Mt. Akagi. The clear waters of the Tone River and the Hirose River flow through the city, which is rich in nature and has beautiful scenery throughout the year. Maebashi’s catchphrase is “the City of Water, Greenery and Poetry”, and it is also known as “the Home of Modern Poetry” since it produced a great number of modern poets like Sakutaro Hagiwara.
 Since it became a city in 1892, Maebashi, the capital of Gunma Prefecture, keeps developing as a center of politics, economy and culture. In 2004, it merged with its three neighboring towns: Ogo-machi, Miyagi-mura and Kasukawa-mura.


The City of Water

Hirose River The Tone River known as “Bando Taro (means a major river in the Kanto Plain)”, which flows through the western part of the city, is the second longest river and has the largest basin area in Japan. In early summer, you can enjoy fishing sweet fish. Furthermore, Water Park is built on the riverbed of the Tone River as a part of Maebashi Park. It has a fountain, a pond and waterfall, and is a relaxing place where people can get close to water.
 On either bank of the Hirose River, which flows through the center of the city, you can enjoy taking a walk along the walking trail, exploring seasonal flowers, trees, poetic and historical monuments. The river is beautifully illuminated at night from late autumn through winter.



The City of Greenery

Shikishima-koen Maebashi can be considered one of the cities with a lot of greenery in Japan. You will be surrounded with greenery everywhere you go in the city such as woods within a park and tree lined streets. Such places as the Zelkova Boulevard in front of the Maebashi Station, Shikishima Park and the weeping willows along the Hirose River represent Maebashi’s greenery.
 In Shikishima Park, lots of people visit the Rose Garden that grows about 7,000 roses with over 600 varieties. The park also has pine forest with around 2,700 pine trees, a botanical garden and a large green field, and you will never get bored spending time there all year round.



The City of Poetry

Sakutaro Hagiwara Since Maebashi was blessed with nature and prospered as a silk city, many modern poets were stood out from this liberal background. There were such poets as Sakutaro Hagiwara who established Japanese free verse, the anarchist poet Kyojiro Hagiwara and Shinkichi Ito, known as a master of contemporary poetry.
 On the banks of the Hirose River, there is the Maebashi Museum of Literature, which mainly exhibits works of poets from Maebashi. The city also encourages people to have an interest in poetry by giving the Sakutaro Hagiwara Literary Award for those who wrote a great work in the field of contemporary poetry.



Data about Maebashi

◆ Location and Area (as of December 2004)
Area 241.22 kmQ
Distance from east to west approx. 20 km
Distance from north to south approx. 25 km
Highest elevation 1,572 m (Arayama)
Lowest elevation 64 m (Shimoauchi-machi)
Address of the Maebashi City Hall 2-12-1 Ote-machi, Maebashi-shi
Longitude 139° 03’ 49”
Latitude  36° 23’  21”


◆ Population (as of the end of  March 2009)
322,614(including foreigners)


◆ Climate (as of 2008)
Average temperature 15.3 ℃
Average wind speed 2.7 m/s
Annual sunshine in hours 2,211.2 h
Annual rainfall 1,310.5 mm


◆ Changes in the City Area
1892 Maebashi was given city status
1901 Incorporated a part of Kamikawafuchi-mura
1951 Incorporated a part of Kaigaya-mura
1954 Mergered with Kamikawafuchi-mura, Shimokawafuchi-mura, Haga-mura, Kaigaya-mura, Azuma-mura, Motosoja-mura, Soja-mura and Nankitsu-mura
1955 Mergered with Kiyosato-mura and incorporated a part of Shintakao-mura and Kise-mura
1957 Incorporated a part of Jonan-mura
1960 Incorporated a part of Tamamura-machi and Jonan-mura
1967 Mergered with Jonan-mura
2004 Meregered with Ogo-machi, Miyagi-mura and Kasukawa-mura


◆ City Emblem
City Emblem  The “Wanuki” was the commander’s standard of Matsudaira, the feudal lord of Maebashi. It was adopted as a city emblem in 1909.
The radius ratio of an outside circle and an inner circle is 1 to 0.73.


◆ City Tree and Flower (since 1975)
Tree: - Flower:
Zelkova
Zelkova
Ginkgo
Ginkgo
Rose
Rose
Azalea
Azalea


◆ Citizen’s Charter (enacted in 1983)
Wishes of the citizens

We are the citizens of Maebashi, the City of Water, Greenery and Poetry. As we aim for happiness in daily life and prosperity of our hometown, we wish as follows:

1. To be compassionate
1. To keep good health
1. To enjoy our work
1. To preserve nature
1. To cherish our culture