Boomer Megacities: Tokyo As a Barometer for the Developed World?
Tokyo's population is swelling at a rate last experienced in the boom of the early 1960s. Tokyo's population grew by over 90,000 in 2006, a result of economic migration from provincial Japan, according to the Land Ministry. As rural populations head for the cities, and the economic gap widens between the urban rich and the rural poor, some 2,600 villages across the country may face extinction. Hokkaido and Nagasaki have suffered most from this polarising trend, say demographers and economists. But the sharp increase in Tokyo's population is also related to the so-called "2007 effect": the mass retirement of baby boomers. Many couples in their 60s who spent their working lives in the suburbs are moving into central Tokyo to be closer to the bright lights.Is this something people are seeing in other regions more broadly, or this strictly a global city phenomenon?