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If you can't go to Paris, go to Kobe.

– Unknown, Pacific Rim Sourcebook

Kobe is the capital of Hyōgo Prefecture located in western Honshu in the Kansai region of Japan. This is an industrial center and one of the largest ports in the country.

Overview

Kobe is the industrial sector of Kansai and is full of plants, shipyards, and warehouses. Many of the gaijin workers have jobs out here, doing the manual labor that Japanese don't want to do. Some Eurocorps still have plants out here, so you can find a lot of German-speakers, and there are quite a few Indians and Bangladeshi too.

The main hot spots are Sannomiya (downtown) for the lower classes and chimpira, and Portutopia island bay, with its high classes corporate VIP hotels. Kobe's Chinatown is the best place for buying and selling things of questionable legality. However, it is a bit dangerous due to conflicts between the Triads in Chinatown who want to expand out, and the Yakuza outside Chinatown, who want in.

History

Kōbe, city, capital of Hyōgo ken (prefecture), west-central Honshu, Japan. Kōbe, its neighboring city Ōsaka, and nearby Kyōto are the centers of the Keihanshin Industrial Zone, the second largest urban and industrial agglomeration in Japan, and the city and its surroundings constitute the western portion of the Ōsaka-Kōbe metropolitan area.

Kōbe's port has long been one of the most important in Japan; in the early 1970s it was combined administratively with that of Ōsaka. In addition to its prominence in shipping, Kōbe is preeminent among Japanese cities in shipbuilding and steel production. The city is served by a dense network of freight and commuter rail lines, including Shinkansen bullet trains. Express highways also link Kōbe with Ōsaka, Kyōto, and Nagoya. The Akashi Kaikyō Bridge, the world's longest suspension bridge at the time of its completion in 1998, links Kōbe with the island of Awaji, in Ōsaka Bay, and another road bridge connects Awaji Island to the city of Naruto on Shikoku.

Kobe Wards

Kobe has nine wards (ku):

  1. Nishi-ku: The westernmost area of Kobe, Nishi-ku overlooks the city of Akashi and is the site of Kobe Gakuin University. This ward has the largest population, with 247,000 residents.[22]
  2. Kita-ku: Kita-ku is the largest ward by area and contains the Rokko Mountain Range, including Mount Rokkō and Mount Maya. The area is well known for its rugged landscape and hiking trails. The onsen resort town of Arima also lies within Kita-ku.
  3. Tarumi-ku: Tarumi-ku is a mostly residential area. The longest suspension bridge in the world, the Akashi Kaikyō Bridge, extends from Maiko in Tarumi-ku to Awaji Island to the south. A relatively new addition to Kobe, Tarumi-ku was not a part of the city until 1946.
  4. Suma-ku: Suma-ku is the site of Suma beach, attracting visitors during the summer months.
  5. Nagata-ku: Nagata-ku is the site of Nagata Shrine, one of the three "Great Shrines" in Kobe.
  6. Hyōgo-ku: At various times known as Ōwada Anchorage or Hyōgo Port, this area is the historical heart of the city. Shinkaichi in Hyogo-ku was once the commercial center of Kobe, but was heavily damaged during World War II, and since, Hyogo-ku has lost much of its former prominence.
  7. Chūō-ku: Chūō (中央) literally means "center" and, as such, Chūō-ku is the commercial and entertainment center of Kobe. Sannomiya, Motomachi and Harborland make up the main entertainment areas in Kobe. Chūō-ku includes the city hall and Hyōgo prefectural government offices. Port Island and Kobe Airport lie in the southern part of this ward.
  8. Nada-ku: The site of Oji Zoo and Kobe University, Nada is known for its sake. Along with Fushimi in Kyoto, it accounts for 45% of Japan's sake production.[23]
  9. Higashinada-ku: The easternmost area of Kobe, Higashinada-ku borders the city of Ashiya. The man-made island of Rokko makes up the southern part of this ward.

Kobe Beach

This where the civvies of the art and media worlds hang out, where wannabes try pitching scripts at cocktail parties to powerful network executives. There's always a party going on somewhere in Kobe, often tinged with the desperation of those trying to make it.

Port Island

Port Island may be a small section of Kobe, but it's the heart of the city. Originally just a port for foreign exports and imports, Port Island expanded in the 2010s to be a huge bustling corporate center of Kobe. The island is covered by towering skyscrapers, industrial factories, ports, and much more. The island is protected by Arasaka troops and before entering the island you must go through a tollbooth on The Kobe Great bridge. The ports are also riddled with security troops to control the illegal exports and refugees trying to sneak through.

The Kobe Airport is also on it's own island connected to Port island by the Tiyknop Bridge which is also heavily guarded. The island has a lot to offer in terms of entertainment; Cubs, VRcades, and so much more. The corporates enjoy a safe life here, however even with all the high security there is still crime coming from the Yakuza and terrorist that show up.

Climate

Kobe has a humid subtropical climate (Köppen climate classification Cfa) with hot summers and cool to cold winters. Precipitation is significantly higher in summer than in winter, though on the whole lower than most parts of Honshū, and there is no significant snowfall.

Economy

The Port of Kobe is both an important port and manufacturing center within the Hanshin Industrial Region. Kobe is the busiest container port in the region, surpassing even Osaka, and the fourth-busiest in Japan.

As of 2004, the city's total real GDP was ¥6.3 trillion, which amounts to thirty-four percent of the GDP for Hyōgo Prefecture and approximately eight percent for the whole Kansai region. Per capita income for the year was approximately ¥2.7 million. Broken down by sector, about one percent of those employed work in the primary sector (agriculture, fishing and mining), twenty-one percent work in the secondary sector (manufacturing and industry), and seventy-eight percent work in the service sector.

The value of manufactured goods produced and exported from Kobe for 2004 was ¥2.5 trillion. The four largest sectors in terms of value of goods produced are small appliances, food products, transportation equipment, and communication equipment making up over fifty percent of Kobe's manufactured goods. In terms of numbers of employees, food products, small appliances, and transportation equipment make up the three largest sectors. The GDP in Kobe Metropolitan Employment Area (3.4 million people) is US$108.0 billion in 2040.

Notable people

Reference

  • Pacific Rim Sourcebook
  • Nippon Sourcebook
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