The district was a residential area in the immediate vicinity of Edo Castle for feudal lords and direct retainers of the shogun during the Edo period. After the Meiji Restoration, the area was developed into a special economic zone. In 1890, the land that was appropriated to the army was sold to the private sector and the area began undergoing developments as Japan’s first office district.
The area stretching along Babasaki-dori Avenue was lined with red-brick buildings and was called “London Block” for its Western appearance. The cityscape created by large-scale office buildings after the completion of Tokyo Station in 1914 was called “New York Block”. Before the war, there was a municipal office district that had been there since before it was relocated to today’s Kasumigaseki.
The government-owned land at Otemachi was being sold to the private sector since 1955, and Otemachi Station was built in 1956. Newspaper companies, banks, trading companies, and economic organizations then started appearing one after another. The historical streetscape still remains to this day and continues to serve as a resource for urban tourism and an appealing feature of the district.。
“Otemachi” was named after Otemon Gate (previously the main gate of Edo Castle).
“Marunouchi” was named so because the “Maru” has the same meaning as “Kuruwa”, which is a term for the walls of a castle. It was a name that existed in various castle towns with areas called “Okuruwauchi (within the castle walls)” during the Edo period.
“Marunouchi” in the Chiyoda district became its official name in 1929.
It is generally said that “Yurakucho” was named after Nagamasu Oda (also known as Urakusai), who was a younger brother of Nobunaga Oda and a famous tea ceremony master.
The Council uses “OMY” as an abbreviation of Otemachi, Marunouchi, and Yurakucho.
Here are detailed explanations on the history of the OMY district. See what went on at Otemachi, Marunouchi, and Yurakucho during the different periods of time.
The OMY district described in numbers.
An introduction to trends in the Otemachi–Marunouchi–Yurakucho District redevelopment project.