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Kitakyushu UNESCO World Heritage / Industrial Revolution



World Heritage, Site of Japan’s Meiji Industrial Revolution. The four sites of Yawata Steel

Works in Kitakyushu area have been inscribed as Iron and Steel Industry. Iron and Steel,

Shipbuilding, and Coal Mining, are a grouping of historic sites that played an important part

 in the industrialization of Japan in the Bakumatsu and Meiji periods.

History of Industrial Revolution  

The buildings of the Imperial Steel Works, Japan at Yawata Works are the surviving components

of Asia’s first successful integrated iron and steel works: the State-run Imperial Steel Works opened 

in 1901. It is located in the northernmost part of Fukuoka Prefecture, the north end of Kyushu, 8 km

south of Hibiki-Nada Seashore close to the continent of ChinaTheir present-day setting is still a

working industrial landscape set in the south-eastern section of Yawata Works which, for over a

century, has consistently maintained a leading role in the Japanese steel industry.


Japan’s Steel Industry

  Kawachi Reservoir

  Higashida No.1 Blast Furnace


World Heritage Sites  


First Head Office of the Steel Works 

Built in 1899, ahead of production facilities. It is an architectural fusion of Japanese and European 

design, a two story red brick building with bilateral symmetry and a central dome set in a Japanese 

tile roof.


World leading rails produced

in the Steel Works

First Head Office building


Observation deck of the

World Heritage


Onga River Pump Station

Built in 1910 on the east bank of the Onga River. It served, and still serves, to deliver industrial water

to Yawata via an 11.4 km pipeline. This supply is integral to the steel production process and was

necessary to cope with the 1st phase expansion of the Imperial Steel Works.


Onga River

Onga River Pump Station

Water piping to the Steel Works


General information 

Address Higasida, Yahata-higasiku, Kitakyushu-city, Fukuoka-prefecture

20 minutes by a vehicle from JR Kokura Station

70 minutes by a vehicle from Fukuoka-city

110 minutes by a vehicle from Beppu