The History of the Port of Yokohama
1) The Opening of the Port:West Meets East
2) The Birth of Yokohama City and the Great Kanto Earthquake
3) Earthquake Recovery-World War
4) Post-war-Rapid Economic Growth
5) The Container Age to Present Day
The Port of Yokohama walked a particularly hard road in the years following the World War . The occupying American forces confiscated almost all port facilities and used them as their command base for their military activities within Japan. With the exception of the military use, all of the port activities were temporarily suspended.
While private trade was also halted after the war, resumption of normal port functions began quickly. In 1949, the allied forces began successive reallocation of Takashima, Yamanouchi, Osanbashi, and Shinko Piers. Still, parts of Shinko Pier were not fully handed over until much later and all of Mizuho Pier is still controlled by the American military.
The Harbor Law, enacted in 1951, effectively transferred the control of the ports from national to state level. When this happened, the City of Yokohama created the Port & Harbor Bureau to oversee the direction of the Port of Yokohama.
The rapid resumption of foreign trade brought an expansion in international business and with it an increased role of importance for Japanese Ports. By 1957 the Port of Yokohama was doubling their pre-war numbers for foreign ships/tonnage and handled cargo.
In order to support the increasing amounts of ships and handled cargo, the Port put into affect a plan to add additional piers. In addition to the building of Detamachi and Yamashita Pier (1963) and Honmoku Pier (1970). Daikoku Pier also began to move toward completion in 1971.
With this rapid construction the Port of Yokohama began to change rapidly. Factory development in the area surrounding the Keihin Industrial Zone grew exponentionally along with the chemical industry. To accommodate this, land was reclaimed off the shore near Daikoku Pier. By the early 1950's late 60's the reclamation of Negishi Bay had made room for the completion of several more waterfront factories.
Due to less than ideal residential living conditions surrounding the factories, many plants were transplanted to newly reclaimed land in Kanazawa. Also, Osanbashi Passenger Terminal reconstruction was completed in order to prepare for the 1964 Tokyo Olympics.
Typical imports of this era:
Typical exports of this era: