In the land planning policy of Japan, the idea of "well-balanced land development" has been one of the most important words. Originally it meant regionally balanced development between the urban and the rural or the higher income districts and the lower ones. But gradually it has been used in the implication that every district could be developed equally. It sometimes was come into use as the meaning of "national minimum" in a broad sense. Consequently the Government has recognized an advantage of exercising influences upon the local governments, for it insisted that it took responsibility to realize "well-balanced land development". On the other hand the local governments have had tendencies to depend on the Government for the sake of petitions to develop their own districts equivalently to others. To some extent the idea of "well-balanced land development" has prevented the trend of decentralization.
Recently the Government Council has begun to introduce the idea of "distinctive development of each district" instead of the idea of "well-balanced land development" into the land planning policy. The idea of "distinctive development of each district" requires the local governments to support themselves. To put it into practice we have to promote decentralization and each district must have its own philosophy to develop.