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Saitama, Saitama

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Country  Japan
Area  217.49 km2
Mayor  Hayato Shimizu
Population  1.222 million (2010)
Region  Kanto

Saitama, Saitama Beautiful Landscapes of Saitama, Saitama
Points of interest  Railway Museum, NACK5 Stadium Omiya, Saitama Super Arena, John Lennon Museum
Colleges and Universities  Saitama University, Urawa University, Saitama Medical University, University of Human Arts and Sciences, Kokusai Gakuin Saitama Junior College

Map of Saitama, Saitama

Saitama (さいたま市, Saitama-shi, [sáꜜìtàmà]) is the capital and the most populous city of Saitama Prefecture in Japan, situated in the south-east of the prefecture. Its area incorporates the former cities of Urawa, Ōmiya, Yono and Iwatsuki. It is a city designated by government ordinance. Being in the Greater Tokyo Area and lying 15 to 30 kilometres north of central Tokyo, many of its residents commute into Tokyo. As of 1 February 2016, the city had an estimated population of 1,226,656 and a population density of 5830 persons per km². Its total area was 217.43 square kilometres (83.95 sq mi).


Saitama, Saitama Beautiful Landscapes of Saitama, Saitama

dvd radiohead saitama 2008 tv broadcast


Saitama, Saitama Culture of Saitama, Saitama

The city was founded on May 1, 2001, and was designated on April 1, 2003 as a government ordinance. For the histories of Urawa, Ōmiya and Yono before the merger, see:

  • Urawa-ku, Saitama
  • Ōmiya-ku, Saitama and
  • Yono, Saitama, respectively.
  • On April 1, 2005, Saitama absorbed the city of Iwatsuki to its east, which became a new ward, Iwatsuki-ku.


    The name "Saitama" originally comes from the Sakitama (埼玉郡) district of what is now the city of Gyōda in the northern part of what is now known as Saitama Prefecture. "Sakitama" has an ancient history and is mentioned in the famous 8th century poetry anthology Man'yōshū. The pronunciation has changed from Sakitama to Saitama over the years.

    With the merger of Urawa, Ōmiya, and Yono it was decided that a new name, one fitting for this newly created prefectural capital, was needed. The prefectural name "Saitama" (埼玉県) was changed from kanji into hiragana, thus Saitama City (さいたま市) was born. It is the only prefectural capital in Japan whose name is always written in hiragana, and belongs to the list of hiragana cities.

    However, Saitama written in hiragana (さいたま市) actually finished in second place in public polling to Saitama written in kanji (埼玉市). Despite this, government officials decided to name the new city Saitama in hiragana, not kanji. In third place in the poll was Ōmiya (大宮市). In fourth was Saitama (彩玉市), written with an alternative kanji for "sai" (彩) which means "colorful". The "sai" (埼) used in the prefectural name is a rare form of a common character (崎) that means cape or promontory.


    The city is located 20 to 30 km north of central Tokyo, roughly at the center of the Kantō Plain. Situated in approximately the center of Saitama Prefecture, the city is topographically comprised by lowlands and plateaus, at mostly less than 20 m above sea level, with no mountain ranges or hills within the city boundaries. The western portion of the city lies on the lowland created by the Arakawa River along with those created by small rivers such as the Moto-Arakawa River, Shiba River, and Ayase River. The rest of the area mostly resides on the Ōmiya Plateau lying in the north-south direction. Dispersed in this region, major rivers flow southward, almost paralleling to one another.

    Surrounding municipalities

  • Saitama Prefecture
  • Ageo (to the northwest)
  • Hasuda (to the north)
  • Shiraoka (to the north)
  • Asaka (to the south)
  • Kawaguchi (to the south)
  • Toda (to the south)
  • Warabi (to the south)
  • Koshigaya (to the east)
  • Kasukabe (to the northeast)
  • Kawagoe (to the west)
  • Shiki (to the west)
  • Fujimi (to the west)
  • Wards

    Saitama has ten wards (ku), which were assigned official colours as of April 2005:


    Saitama's economy is principally constituted by commercial business. The city is one of many commercial centers of the Greater Tokyo area and serves Saitama Prefecture, North Kanto, and northeast Honshu.

    Saitama is also home to various manufacturers, exporting automotive (Honda manufactures the Honda Legend at Sayama Plant), food, optical, precision and pharmaceutical products. Calsonic Kansei, a global automotive company is headquartered in the city. Iwatsuki is famous for manufacturing of hinamatsuri dolls and ornate kabuto (samurai helmets).


    Representative station is Urawa Station. Saitama is a regional transportation hub for both passengers and freight train lines. Ōmiya Station, part of the Shinkansen high-speed train network, serves as the biggest railway hub in the prefecture.

    The closest major airports are Haneda Airport and Narita International Airport, both about two hours away. Honda Airport in Okegawa is for general aviation and offers no scheduled transport services. Commuter helicopter flights to Narita Airport are offered from Kawajima.

    Railway stations

    East Japan Railway Company
    Tōhoku, Akita, Yamagata, Jōetsu and Hokuriku Shinkansen
  • Ōmiya
  • Utsunomiya Line
  • Urawa - Saitama-Shintoshin - Ōmiya - Toro - Higashi-Ōmiya
  • Takasaki Line
  • Urawa - Saitama-Shintoshin - Ōmiya - Miyahara
  • Keihin-Tōhoku Line
  • Minami-Urawa - Urawa - Kita-Urawa - Yono - Saitama-Shintoshin - Ōmiya
  • Saikyō Line
  • Musashi-Urawa - Naka-Urawa - Minami-Yono - Yonohommachi - Kita-Yono - Ōmiya
  • Musashino Line
  • Nishi-Urawa - Musashi-Urawa - Minami-Urawa - Higashi-Urawa
  • Kawagoe Line
  • Ōmiya - Nisshin - Nishi-Ōmiya - Sashiōgi
  • Saitama Rapid Railway Line
  • Urawa Misono
  • Tobu Urban Park Line
  • Ōmiya - Kita-Ōmiya - Ōmiya-kōen - Ōwada - Nanasato - Iwatsuki - Higashi-Iwatsuki
  • Saitama New Urban Transit ("New Shuttle")
  • Ōmiya - Tetsudō-Hakubutsukan - Kamonomiya - Higashi-Miyahara - Konba - Yoshinohara
  • Highways

  • Tohoku Expressway
  • Tokyo Gaikan Expressway
  • Shuto Expressway
  • National Route 16
  • National Route 17
  • National Route 122
  • National Route 293
  • National Route 463
  • Politics and government

    The executive mayor, who is directly elected, is Sōichi Aikawa, an independent backed by the Liberal Democratic Party and Komeito. On May 24, 2009, Aikawa lost his bid for reelection against Hayato Shimizu, who was backed by the opposition DPJ. The city assembly of Saitama has 64 elected members.


  • Saitama mayoral election, 2005
  • Universities

  • Mejiro University
  • Nihon University Faculty of Law
  • The Open University of Japan Omiya Study Center
  • Saitama University
  • Shibaura Institute of Technology
  • University of Human Arts and Sciences
  • Urawa University
  • Nippon Institute of Technology
  • Junior Colleges

  • Kokusai Gakuin Saitama Junior College
  • Urawa University Junior College
  • Professional Graduate School

  • Omiya Law School
  • Sports

    Saitama was one of the host cities for the playoffs and the final of the official 2006 Basketball World Championship.

    It is home to two J. League football (soccer) teams: the Urawa Red Diamonds, formerly owned by Mitsubishi, and Omiya Ardija, formerly owned by NTT.

    The city and Tokorozawa are home to the Japan Professional Basketball League team the Saitama Broncos.

  • Urawa Red Diamonds - J. League football (soccer)
  • Omiya Ardija - J. League football (soccer)
  • Saitama Broncos - bj league basketball (The base is Saitama Prefecture, main is Saitama, Tokorozawa.)
  • Saitama Seibu Lions - NPB (baseball)
  • NJPW Dojo - NJPW (professional wrestling)
  • Since 2013, the city has hosted the Saitama Criterium cycling race sponsored by the Tour de France, held at the end of October.

    Mass media

    Most of Saitama Prefecture's mass media presence is concentrated in this city. See Mass media in Saitama Prefecture for details.

    Sister cities

    Saitama has seven sister cities.

  • Toluca, Mexico (1979)
  • Zhengzhou, China (1981)
  • Hamilton, New Zealand (1984)
  • Richmond, Virginia, United States (1994)
  • Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada (1996)
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States (1998)
  • Balzers, Liechtenstein (2000)
  • Visitor attractions

  • Akigase Park
  • Besshonuma Park
  • Hikawa Shrine
  • John Lennon Museum
  • Minuma Rice Paddies
  • Minuma Tsūsen-bori
  • Ōmiya Bonsai Village
  • Railway Museum
  • Saitama New Urban Center
  • Saitama Stadium 2002
  • Saitama Super Arena
  • Saitama Museum of Modern Art
  • References

    Saitama, Saitama Wikipedia

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