Post War land reform and the impact on planning in Japan
Amati, M. and Parker, G., (2006) Post War land reform and the impact on planning in Japan. Working Papers in Real Estate & Planning. 11/06. Working Paper. University of Reading, Reading. pp23.
One feature of Japanese urban areas in the 21st century that is bound to strike any Western visitor is the extensive spread of its suburbs with their varied mixing of land-uses. It is almost impossible to pinpoint precisely where the city begins and where it ends. During the post-War period, this characteristic pattern of land-use sprawled over the countryside, seemingly unimpeded by planning restrictions. The number of studies that highlight the problems of Japanese planning outweighs the research that explores its underlying causes. This paper aims to partly redress this imbalance by describing a case study of the failed implementation of the green belt around Tokyo and to link this with the Allied Occupation’s postwar land reforms and drafting of a new constitution in the period 1946-1951. Overall, we aim to highlight how the ostensible benefits and aims of a land reform programme can entail substantial disbenefits or unforeseen outcomes in terms of land-use planning..