TECH & CULTURE
Introduction of Subways in Tokyo
December 08, 2023
Tokyo's public transportation system is well-developed with buses, trains, and subways. The subway system running in Tokyo today is operated by two companies, Tokyo Metro and Toei Transportation, and has grown to 13 lines with a total distance of 300 km. Tokyo was a very compact city until the end of the 19th century, and at that time, the main means of getting around were walking, rickshaws, and horse-drawn carriages. However, in the 20th century, Tokyo's commerce and industry developed rapidly. Along with this rapid expansion, Tokyo's population also grew rapidly and from 1903, streetcars began to operate, expanding the range of people's activities. Tokyo's population outpaced the number of streetcars, which led to the construction of a subway system in the city. The first full-scale subway line was built in Japan in 1927, followed by a series of new lines that have been built up to the present. Tokyo's colourful subway map shows a series of intricately intertwined lines, and subway stations are often seen by foreign tourists as labyrinths. Therefore, signs at subway stations are designed in a way that can be easily understood by foreign tourists.