This study aims at the verification of the hypothesis on the polarization to mega-city regions and urban divide with focus on gentrification in the Special Wards of Tokyo, Japan. Following the extensive literature review on gentrification, firstly, we analyzed the situation of gentrification and urban divide at the Ward level and applied the cluster analysis to further discuss the situation at a micro-level. Secondly, we shed light on the relation between local government policies on urban regeneration and gentrification in Tokyo and found strong relationship between them. The acceleration of the concentration of wealth to Tokyo is clearly observed in Japan since 2000s. In particular, the polarization of wealth as well as the highest income class to the central part of Tokyo is ever accelerating these days under the neoliberal urban policies. In the urban scale analysis in the Special Wards of Tokyo, situation of gentrification in the central city areas are obvious these days. On the other hands, the concentration of lower income households is observed in inner areas. Younger people of lower income tend to live in the west inner city areas while aged people with lower income tend to live in the north and east inner city areas. As a result, the urban divide in both social and spatial terms are observed. Yet, in inner city areas middle-class gentrification through the development of high-rise apartments/condominiums are also actively advancing and thus micro-level, mosaic-pattern spatial disparity is formed in inner city areas of Tokyo. Based on the analysis on the land use and urban redevelopment policies of Tokyo Metropolitan Government and the City Master Plans of 7 selected Wards (cities), it is found out that urban development/redevelopment policies at the Ward level are classified to the following 3 types: ‘large-scale urban redevelopment oriented type’, ‘incremental improvement oriented type’ and ‘hybrid type’. Wards located in the city center and its vicinity belong to the large-scale urban redevelopment-oriented type, while other Wards belong to other types based on their situations. The large-scale urban redevelopment-oriented policies naturally have high affinity to neoliberalism urban development/redevelopment policies. It follows that urban development/redevelopment polices in the Wards in the city center and its vicinity promote gentrification in those areas and thus bring about urban divide in Tokyo.
|Translated title of the contribution
|STUDY ON THE FORMATION OF NEOLIBERALISM CITY AND SPATIAL POLARIZATION IN TOKYO: Focus on the situation of gentrification in special wards of Tokyo
|Number of pages
|Published - 2021