[hir-uhtsoo-kuh; Japanese hee-rah-tsoo-kah]
a city in central Honshu, Japan, near Yokohama.
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Encyclopedia Britannica


city, Kanagawa ken (prefecture), Honshu, Japan. It lies along Sagami Bay of the Pacific Ocean. Hiratsuka developed as a post town along the main Tokyo-Kyoto Highway during the Tokugawa period (1603-1867). When the railway between Tokyo and Kobe was opened in 1887, a commercial centre developed around the railroad station in the eastern part of the city. The city's northern sector is industrialized, with rubber, chemical, machinery, automobile, and food-processing plants. The surrounding agricultural region produces vegetables and dairy cattle. Much farmland in the area has been used for large housing projects for commuters to the Tokyo-Yokohama Metropolitan Area. Hiratsuka's annual Star Festival is renowned. Pop. (2005) 258,958.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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