Aquapolis Nakanoshima①

  • TEXT
  • Shinichi Takaoka

  • Nakanoshima is a district stretching about 3 km from east to west on a sandbar between Dojimagawa and Tosaborigawa rivers and located about one subway station away from Osaka Station. It is the most symbolic district of the ‘Water City Osaka,’ which has supported the city called ‘Tenka no Daidokoro (the Kitchen of the Nation).’ While many local lords from all over Japan owned and operated Kurayashiki (warehouse-residences) here in the Edo era, main facilities of the city were also placed in Nakanoshima in and after the Meiji era. The district is long and narrow and each area has its own atmosphere. Since many promenades have been constructed along riverbanks, it is a perfect place for strolling around. As Keihan Nakanoshima Line opened in 2008, the development of the western part of Nakanoshima has been accelerated. In recent years, more and more people are moving to Nakanoshima.

    Let’s take a walk through Nakanoshima from east to west. We start from Nakanoshima Park at the eastern end of the area, which stretches from the point called Kensaki (tip of a blade) through Tenjinbashi Bridge to reach Midosuji, Osaka’s main street. It was the first park constructed by the Osaka City government in 1891 and was restored in 2009 at the occasion of an event called ‘Suito (water city) Osaka’ to facilitate the city’s redevelopment, which was jointly implemented by Osaka city and prefectural overnments. The Lawn Garden in the eastern area is a place of relaxation and recreation where many citizens come every day. The Rose Garden is crowded with visitors who come to enjoy beautiful roses in blooming seasons. In the area on the western side of Sakaisuji St., many historic, stately buildings are located including two Important Cultural Properties of Japan, namely Osaka City Central Public Hall (1918) and Osaka Prefectural Nakanoshima Library (1904), and Osaka City Hall as well as Bank of Japan Osaka Branch (1903) sitting across Midosuji St. This area is the civic center of Osaka, which boasts an air of dignity. In 2020, a library named ‘Nakanoshima Children’s Book Forest’ opened. The idea was created by Tadao Ando, a famous architect, and realized through donations and contributions. Since roadways were removed from Nakanoshima Park when the library opened, the park became a safer and more comfortable place for children and family. At The Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka (1982) standing next to the Park, renovation of the entrance is under way, which is to be completed next spring. After the work is finished, please visit the cafe in the entrance and enjoy the view of the outside open space. In addition, we do recommend you drop in Kitahama Terrace. Sixteen wooden terraces run by cafes or restaurants line up along the Tosabori river flowing along the southern edge of the Nakanoshima district. This is Japan’s first permanent Kawayuka (terrace by river bank) which is used year-round and was constructed in Osaka in 2009. It is a result of a collaborative project by citizens aiming at building community on the waterfront.




  • 〒530-0027
    2-1, Doyama-cho, Kita-ku, Osaka-shi, Osaka