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Ikebukuro Terminal Building
3.2.1 Background and history
Ikebukuro Station is located in the northwestern part of Tokyo's downtown area. It
offers access to the Yamanote Line and the Saikyo Line operated by the EJR, the Marunouchi
Line and the Yurakucho Line operated by the Teito Rapid Transit Authority (TRTA), the
Ikebukuro Line operated by the Seibu, a private corporation, and the Tojo Line of the Tobu,
also a private corporation. Although each agency has a station connected to all the others, that
station is separated from the other stations by fare gates and is managed by separate agencies.
(See Figure 3.2) Throughout this thesis, I use the term of Ikebukuro Station when referring to
the whole station composed of the stations of all of the rail companies, and I use the term
agency station, e.g., EJR's Ikebukuro Station or EJR's station, when referring to any station
area enclosed by gates. While most passengers are commuters who transfer from their trains at
Ikebukuro Station, a portion of them remain there and work or shop in the Ikebukuro area. The
Ikebukuro area itself is an active center which includes office spaces, retail shops, department
stores, hotels, and cultural facilities, but the east and west gate areas have not been developed
equally. The east gate area houses the Toshima Ward Town Hall, two large department stores,
and a huge complex development including the tallest building in Japan, known as Sunshine
City Mall. The west gate area, however, was not highly developed until recently. The main
development around the west gate is the Tobu Department Store (TDS), a subsidiary of the
Tobu located above Tobu's station.
EJR's Ikebukuro Station was the second most active station among all EJR stations in
1993, with an average of 610,000 boarding passengers daily. 7 Each of its separate stations,
Seibu, Tobu, and the TRTA is the most active among all the stations on its line, with 338,000
passengers, 305,000 passengers, and 301,000 passengers, respectively. 8
7 East Japan Railway Company, Annual Report '96, 1996, p. 146. (in Japanese)
8 Ministry of Transport, Rail FactBook '96, 1996, p. 33. (in Japanese)