Virtual visit to A-bomb Dome is made available online

by Yumi Kanazaki, Staff Writer

On March 10, Google, the Web-search giant based in the United States, added the Atomic Bomb Dome in downtown Hiroshima to its “Street View” gallery on the Internet, where both maps and 360-degree panoramic photos are posted.

At the website, Internet users can see the appearance of the A-bomb Dome from various locations. Google will take photos of the inside of the A-bomb Dome in cooperation with the City of Hiroshima and post these photos at the website in the near future. On the day, a ceremony was held in Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park across from the A-bomb Dome.

Kazusuke Obi, an operating officer of Google Japan Inc., emphasized the significance of the addition, saying, “People can, from anywhere in the world, touch the site which suffered the world’s first atomic bombing.” Hiroshima Mayor Tadatoshi Akiba expressed his delight, saying, “This is a wonderful effort for peace, too.”

On March 10, Google also added Itsukushima Shrine in the city of Hatsukaichi, Peace Memorial Park in downtown Hiroshima, Hiroshima Castle in downtown Hiroshima, Hijiyama Hill Park in Minami Ward, Hiroshima, Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art in Minami Ward, Hiroshima, and Mazda Stadium in Minami Ward, Hiroshima, to its “Street View” gallery. The photos available in the “Street View” gallery are normally taken from the street outside the grounds of targeted sites. However, the photos of the above-mentioned sites were also taken inside the grounds and included in the “Special Collection” section. To date, maps and photos of 53 sites in Japan, including those of Nijo Castle in Kyoto, have been published in the “Special Collection” section.

(Originally published on March 11, 2011)