New pedestrian bridge opens north of Peace Bridge

(by Aya Kano, Staff Writer)

A new bridge for pedestrians and cyclists was opened to traffic in downtown Hiroshima on March 21. The new bridge, constructed by the City of Hiroshima, is separated by railings from the Peace Bridge, whose original railings are of exposed concrete. The surface of the new railings looks similar to that of the original railings made 67 years ago. The bridge with the “restored” railings will go on conveying the memory of Hiroshima’s post-war reconstruction.

The new pedestrian bridge is 5.7 meters wide and is separated from the roadway by the railings originally designed by the late Isamu Noguchi, a world-famous sculptor. A ceremony was held to celebrate the opening of the bridge in the east building of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum. In a speech, Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui said, “I hope the new pedestrian bridge, which runs alongside the Peace Bridge, will be loved by many people.” Renna Takamatsu, 11, joined the first crossing of the pedestrian bridge. The fifth-grader at Fukuromachi Elementary School said, “Many people put their hearts into building this bridge. People will feel happy when they cross it.”

To commemorate the opening of the bridge, the Rotary Club of Hiroshima North has donated a sign that provides explanation about the Peace Bridge along with 18 red horse chestnut trees. After this April, the sidewalk portion of the Peace Bridge will be removed to make the roadway wider.

(Originally published on March 22, 2019)