PUBLIC WORKS BUREAU > The Work of the Public Works Bureau > History of rivers
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History of rivers
The rivers and canals crisscrossing the water metropolis of Osaka were at one time considered important transportation arteries within the city and helped to foster the growth of local industries.
However, the development of land-based transportation in the postwar years was accompanied by a marked decline in waterway traffic. Additionally, sewage and sedimentation released by factories and the like resulted in the deterioration of water quality in the city's river systems. Against this backdrop, Typhoon Jane caused significant damage to the area in 1950 and prompted the implementation of various measures to protect against similar storm surges, which resulted in the reclamation of numerous rivers that were replaced by community roads and tree-lined walkways.
Despite the changes that have occurred, Osaka remains a city in which approximately ten percent of its surface consists of water. Its river systems contribute to the local heritage as precious open spaces and to that end, development activities are shaped not simply by the need to ensure proper flood control measures but also by environmental considerations.
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