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Katase-Enoshima Station Ranked 4th in 'Best Places to Live' Survey

TOKYO, May 17 (News On Japan) - A ranking of the 'most livable places' in the Tokyo metropolitan area has been announced. While the top three remained unchanged from last year, Katase-Enoshima Station made its debut at fourth place in this year's survey.

Katase-Enoshima Station in Fujisawa City, Kanagawa Prefecture, is the closest station to Enoshima. In addition to the Odakyu Enoshima Line, the area is served by the Enoshima Electric Railway and the Shonan Monorail, providing convenient access to Kamakura and central Tokyo.

The Katase area is home to approximately 20,000 residents and boasts several shopping streets.

On May 15, Katase-Enoshima Station was ranked fourth in the "Best Places to Live" survey. Previously not included in the survey, the station area qualified this year due to an increase in responses.

A person who relocated from Tokyo last year commented, "There are many places to walk, such as parks and the sea, which I think is great for raising children."

What makes Katase-Enoshima Station and its surroundings so attractive?

Riku Watanabe, 25, who moved from Yamato City six months ago and works at a restaurant in Kamakura, said, "When you go to cafes or restaurants, you often end up chatting with the staff. It happens more frequently here than in Tokyo. These interactions help me learn about local ingredients and the area, which suits me well."

Ryo Tanaka, 35, moved here from Tokyo three years ago after getting married and shares his life in the area on social media.

Tanaka said, "I often feel refreshed by watching the sunset, Mt. Fuji, the sea, and Enoshima from here. It's my favorite spot."

He started posting about the charms of Enoshima right after moving. Over time, he discovered more and more about the area's appeal through his posts.

Tanaka added, "Kamakura is nearby, and you can reach extraordinary places within a 5 to 10-minute walk, which is great for a change of pace."

Initially, Tanaka had concerns about moving, but now he feels completely settled.

"I thought I might move again after a year or so, but now I love it so much that I want to stay here permanently," he said.

Fujisawa City Sees Increased Relocations: The Appeal of "Semi-Rural" Living

Fujisawa City, where Katase-Enoshima Station is located, has experienced steady population growth, even during the COVID-19 pandemic. The city's population increased from about 430,000 in 2019 to over 440,000 as of May this year.

According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, in the fiscal year 2021, the number of people moving into the city exceeded those moving out by 4,554, ranking it eighth in the nation. The city also had the highest number of new residents under 14 in Kanagawa Prefecture, and seventh nationwide, indicating a trend of families relocating to the area.

Fujisawa City supports new residents with subsidies for purchasing homes and medical expense assistance for children, focusing on aiding families.

The concept of "semi-rural" living has influenced relocation decisions. Fumihiko Inagaki, Deputy Director of the NPO Furusato Return Support Center, explained, "Previously, relocation was mainly for enjoying rural life after retirement, but the COVID-19 pandemic has popularized telework, prompting younger generations to move to semi-rural areas where they can still commute to the city."

Inagaki added, "Many young people who were students or new employees during the pandemic now seek closer community ties, prompting moves from urban areas with sparse human connections to regional cities."

Source: ANN

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