City’s Budget for Fiscal 2007 decided
26 March 2007
Kyoto City Council has decided the city’s budget for fiscal 2007. The general account is 690.9 billion yen. Including the special account and public sector account, the total becomes 1,749.3 billion yen. It is Mr. Masumoto’s third term as a mayor and he made this budget as ‘the budget for a bright city future, especially for Kyoto creation and supporting childcare and education’. The city will make efforts towards a ‘new scenery policy’ which strictly regulates the height and design of buildings and outside ads. It also respects the theme/concept of ‘Kyoto creation’ which will make Kyoto more attractive as a historical city in terms of scenery, culture and tourism. The budget also focuses on childcare, including after-school facilities and expanding medical cost support for babies. Other new projects will be started from April including a ban on street smoking, utilization of paid-for garbage bags, etc. The city will work hard to make all these projects a success.
Fushimi Momoyama Athletic Park Opened
26 March 2007
On April 1st 2007, Fushimi Momoyama Athletic Park opened on the old site of the Fushimi Momoyama Castle Land amusement park. Applications for baseball park and multi purpose use ground are now being accepted. People or groups who wish to use these facilities can apply from computer terminals providing sport information which are located in 18 sports facilities throughout the city. First-time application requires user registration. Please use this new sport facility for your fun with your friends and family. For further information, contact the Kyoto City Sports Planning Section at 075-222-4033.
IC Card System Introduced in the City Subway System
19 March 2007
From April 1st 2007, Kyoto City has introduced an IC card system on all its subway lines. As a result, passengers can use IC cards like ‘PiTaPa’ provided by the Surutto Kansai Association. ‘PiTaPa’ is an IC card which can be used with train/bus services in Kansai area. Just touch the ticket gate machine briefly with the card and no cash is necessary. The fee is debited from a designated bank account every month. PiTaPa is already being used on the Kintetsu Railway and Keihan Railway Otsu lines which have a direct connection with city subway system. Therefore passengers can changes train without buying a new ticket each time. Also PiTaPa can be used for shopping in convenience stores in the subway of Shijo Station and other member shops. The city is planning to have a new discount service for PiTaPa users to deduct a certain amount automatically from the monthly payment based on the amount that one uses PiTaPa every month. For further information, contact the Planning Section of Kyoto City Transportation Bureau at 075-822-9104.
Kyoto Sakura Map 2007 Published
19 March 2007
Kyoto City has published the Kyoto Sakura Map 2007 which introduces 40 recommended places in Kyoto for cherry blossom viewing. The map covers five areas of the city (north, central, Okazaki, south, east, and west) and provides detailed information to help tourists and residents enjoy the cherry season. It also includes event information related to cherry blossoms and essays from Ms. Keiko Asou. The map is available at City Hall, ward offices and branch offices, tourist information centers, Nijo Castle and other main temples and shrines in the city. For further information, contact the Kyoto City Cultural Art Planning Section at 075-213-1370.
Collecting Public Opinion about the Ordinance to Ban Smoking on Streets
12 March 2007
Kyoto City is now preparing a new ordinance to ban smoking on the street to prevent casual accidents and burns by cigarettes as well as ensure the safe and healthy life of the citizens. Now the city is collecting public opinion about this new ordinance. The application form is available at City Hall, ward office and branch offices, or from the website of Local Maintenance Promotion Section. The deadline is April 6th (Fri.). For further information, contact the Kyoto City Local Maintenance Promotion Section at 075-222-3049.
‘Miyako College’ 2007 Students Recruited
12 March 2007
Kyoto City is now recruiting students for its ‘Miyako College’. It is a lecture program in which working people can attend lectures at universities and colleges. The city has been developing the ‘City College’ program for 10 years as a way to provide learning opportunities to all citizens. In celebration of its 10th anniversary, course content was improved and the name of the program was changed. In addition to previous main lectures, the ‘Citizen’s Liberal Education Program’, ‘Acquiring Certification Program’, and ‘Special Courses’ were added. The special courses provide an opportunity to work in the local community as a guide. About 400 programs have been organized at 38 universities and colleges this year. The city expects to have many participants. The application form is available at Campas Plaza Kyoto (Nishinotoin Shiokoji-sagaru, Shimogyo-ku), City Hall, ward offices and branch offices. Applications will be accepted until March 31st 2007. For further information, contact the Kyoto City Project Promotion Section at 075-222-3103.
Kyoto City Half Marathon Held
5 March 2007
The Kyoto City Half Marathon is one of the famous early spring events in Kyoto. It was held on March 11th, Sun. this year. About 7,000 runners started from Heian Shrine at 9:00. They ran through the city via City Hall, Kyoto Prefectural Botanical Gardens, Kyoto International Conference Hall, and ended at Heian Shrine. Many people watched and encouraged the runners. On that day traffic was regulated on Kitayama St., Shirakawa St., Karasuma St., etc. Some other events related to the race were held too. On March 10th from 10:00 to 16:00, a Sports Carnival was held in the Okazaki Baseball Park. On the 11th from 9:30 to 11:30, a game-style traffic safety drill was organized. Both were free to join and no reservations were required. For further information, contact the Kyoto City Half Marathon Secretariat at 075-222-3537.
Kyoto Higashiyama Hana Touro Held
5 March 2007
Kyoto Higashiyama Hana Touro was held this year from March 10th, Sat. to 21st, Wed. between 18:00 and 21:30. The Higashiyama area and temples and shrines along the route were beautifully lit-up. The rougly 4.6 km route, from Shoren-in Temple on the north to Kiyomizu Temple on the south, was lined with about 2,400 lanterns made of traditional Kyoto crafts including Kyoto/Kiyomizu pottery, Kitayama cedar, etc. In addition, 10 big ikebana flower arrangements were displayed on the route too. Other special performances, special public opening of temples and shrines were organized. People enjoyed this elegant night time illumination of the old capital. Public transportation was recommended to all who came. For further information, contact the Kyoto Hana Touro Promotion Committee at 075-212-8173.