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Kichijoji regains title of most desirable place to live in Kanto region

The natural beauty of Inokashira Park, only a 10-minute walk from Kichijoji Station, can be seen in this photo taken in the city of Musashino, Tokyo, on April 4, 2017. (Mainichi)

Kichijoji, in the Tokyo suburb of Musashino, has regained the top spot in Recruit Sumai Co.'s 2017 rankings of where people want to live the most in the Kanto region, according to an internet survey.

    Since Recruit Sumai began the survey in 2010, Kichijoji has taken the top spot every year apart from losing to Ebisu in Shibuya Ward in 2016. The ranking was based on a survey conducted over the web from Jan. 21 to 26, where respondents could pick the top three places they wanted to live in the Kanto region according to train stations.

    With a first-place ranking earning a location three points, second place two points, and third place one point, Kichijoji came in first with 586 points, with Ebisu coming in second at 511 points, Yokohama third with 460 points, Meguro fourth with 366 points, and Shinagawa fifth with 346 points. Last year, Ebisu outpolled Kichijoji by 80 points, but this year Kichijoji made a comeback, beating out Ebisu by 75 points. A total of 3,996 people living in Tokyo, Kanagawa, Chiba and Ibaraki prefectures between the ages of 20-49 submitted their responses.

    As to why Kichijoji made a comeback this year, a representative of Recruit Sumai said, "With its shopping streets, department stores and Inokashira Park, its popularity among families is as high as ever." On top of that, the representative added, manga about a Kichijoji real estate company, "Are you sure Kichijoji is the only place you want to live?" being made into a television drama last year, and activities surrounding Inokashira Park's 100th anniversary this coming May being widely covered in newspapers also had a big impact.

    Koichi Sato, 64, the vice-president of a council for revitalizing Kichijoji made up of 52 groups, including Kichijoji's 23 merchants' associations, said, "All of Kichijoji's businesses, schools, and other community-based groups are planning events and getting the word out, aiming to keep Kichijoji the place where everyone wants to live the most. I'm happy to see our work pay off."

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