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January 2016

The ROHM Theatre Kyoto has opened

On January 10th, 2016, the ROHM Theatre Kyoto opened in the Okazaki area in Sakyo Ward.

The theatre succeeded the legacy of the Kyoto Kaikan Hall which had been loved as the "Hall of Culture" for over 50 years. Keeping the original architectural elements of Kyoto Kaikan Hall as much as possible, the ROHM Theatre Kyoto was born to be a brand new facility equipped with the latest stage settings and functions.

There are three halls for major stage performances.

The Main Hall has a balcony structure for the purpose of hosting large scale stage performances such as ballets, operas, and musicals. Though it has a kind of European style theatre, the interior is decorated by the traditional techniques of Kyoto crafts such as ceramics, etc. Here, a number of performances by internationally-acclaimed singers and theatre groups will be planned.

The South Hall is for more intimate performances, such as Japanese traditional cultural arts, theatre, and dances since the audience is close enough to the stage, thus letting the audience to be able to appreciate the facial expressions of each performer. The North Hall can be used for small-scale performances and as a rehearsal space.

The ROHM Theatre Kyoto is extensively open to the public. Even if there are no events or performances in the theatre, there is always something happening. In the Park Plaza, people can enjoy reading books and magazines freely over a cup of coffee as well as visiting their restaurant. The open-air area, ROHM Square has a special yard where markets and other events can be held.

Come and enjoy Kyoto's new "Hall of Culture" which has so much to offer.

[Contact] Kyoto City Culture and Art Planning Section: Tel: 075-366-0033

Support for Making Disaster Resistant Town in Crowded Areas

Kyoto City has been distributing a leaflet, "Direction on Making Disaster Resistant Town," which introduces the tips to prevent from disasters in crowded areas, especially in areas where many old houses are gathered. In the leaflet, the City's support system and the local town's case example of approach, etc. are introduced.

At Kyoto's crowded downtown area, a good part is that there remains an old traditional town scape and having good-old local communities, but on the other hand, many problems remain, such as making it difficult to evacuate or rescue when disasters occur, and there is a chance of fires spreading, etc.

At many major cities, the approach, which is taken, in general is to build a new condominium or a wider street after residents moved out. But in Kyoto, the approach taken is an activity which local citizens play the main role to make a disaster-free town and at the same time preserve the traditional land scape.

In this leaflet, it introduces an activity to model an area's way of approach. Also, the City's support measures, such as dispatching specialists, introducing the cost on making an empty house's site changing it into a disaster preventive site and a subsidy system to make earthquake-proof building renovations are introduced.

For details, please refer to the "Direction on Making Disaster Resistant Town" distributed at information centers of city hall, etc.

Kyoto City has been working on fire prevention in cooperation with citizens, such as holding independent fire prevention meetings, volunteer fire companies, community activities, and so forth. As a result, the number of deaths by fire within the last year became 6 decreased by 11 from the previous year, which is the lowest number in 51 years. The number of the fire disasters occurring by arson in the city has decreased by 19 cases from the previous year as well.

To further make efforts on activities preventing fire disaster in coordination with citizens, the City will ask for your understanding and cooperation.

Kyoto City Town Creation/Promotion Division: Tel: 075-222-3503

Enjoying Brisk Sales at Eki-naka Business

Last month, a shopping space "Kotochika Oike," which is located within the Karasuma Oike subway station, held its grand opening. There were 2 shops in the past, but it added 4 new shops this time, making it a total of 6 shops. Newly opened shops are: "Starbucks Coffee," "Ogaki Book Store," "Cocokara Fine" drug store and "Raffine" body care shop. Now, the shopping place has been renovated to a more convenient spot.

"Kotochika" is one of the "Eki-naka (within station)" businesses, which tries to generate revenue growth via the subway by using station space as a commercial activity spot.
It was initially started in Shijo subway station in October 2010, and afterwards, Karasuma Oike, Kyoto and Yamashina stations.

As a result, revenue increased to 800 million yen in FY 2014 from 200 million yen of FY 2009. From now on, the goal is set to make the revenue to one billion yen by FY 2018.

The City has been working on various activities in cooperation with local areas as setting the goal to "increasing to 50,000 passengers" per day by FY 2018. This is to regain the financial health of the City Subway, and these activities include: holding an event at subway stations and its surrounding area, improving convenience by adopting IC card systems, etc., and through the project of "A Walking City Kyoto" within local areas. In the result, about 32,000 passengers have increased for 5 years until FY 2014, and especially in also FY 2015, the number of passengers increased at a good pace due to the extending of the last subway's departure time on Fridays, etc.

From now on, the City will work harder on making station areas bustle with people and making a stable management for the City Subway through expanding Kotochica Kyoto and so on.

[Contact] Kyoto City Transportation Bureau Sales Promotion Division: Tel: 075-863-5068

The City Bus's Diagram Further Expanded

Starting from March 19th, 2016, a new diagram will be implemented in order to enhance the convenience of the city bus system.

The 3 major points are as follows:
First, increasing the number of buses at local areas where the community is taking an active role promoting on utilization of buses. Specifically, 43 buses will be increased which connect to the railway stations in Ukyo, Nishi-kyo and Fushimi ward, and so on.
Second, to improve access bounds to Umekoji Park because of opening the Kyoto Railway Museum on April 29th, this year. The buses run between Umekoji Park and major sightseeing spots such as the Shijo Kawaramachi area, Higashiyama and Okazaki areas will also be increased. Third, as part of the project of "A Walking City Kyoto," to strengthen accesses to the south exit front square of Kyoto Station which is now being redeveloped.

To make it more convenient for the city bus, the City has been progressing projects which were planned especially from a citizen's perspective. These projects cover a major expansion of new bus lines and diagrams, improving the wait-time environment by installing the "Bus Station (a system to let passengers know how long before their bus arrives, etc.)," and starting the implementation of IC cards and so on. In response to these efforts, the number of bus' passengers per day has been increasing for the past 5 consecutive years. As for management, the accumulated fund shortage of 14.4 billion yen at the peak has all been dissolved and independent management was established due to a lack of subsidy from general accounting. This was possible by cutting payrolls and increasing business efficiency.

The City will further work on making the city bus more user friendly as they are the "feet of the community," and also its stable management.

[Contact] Kyoto City Transportation Bureau Automobile Traffic Section: Tel: 075-863-5132

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