City outlines 34 projects to mark 70th anniversary of A-bombing: Renovation of Rest House and compilation of history included

Plans to be finalized in February

by Kohei Okata, Staff Writer

The outline of the City of Hiroshima’s plans for initiatives to mark the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombing in 2015 was revealed on November 27. The initiatives will focus on passing on the memories of the A-bombing and on enhancing the city’s ability to convey its call for peace. The outline covers 34 projects, including the renovation of the Rest House in Peace Memorial Park and the compilation of the city’s 70-year history since the A-bombing. The cost of the projects and their schedule will be finalized in February of next year. Some of the plans are expected to be implemented starting in fiscal year 2014.

Located 170 meters southwest of the hypocenter of the A-bombing, the Rest House is a reinforced-concrete structure with three floors above ground and one below. It also houses a small store. The building was erected in 1929 as a kimono shop. At the time of the A-bombing it was being used as offices for the Hiroshima Prefecture Fuel Rationing Union, and after the war it housed the offices of city employees involved in reconstruction. The structure has served as the Rest House since 1982. To mark the 70th anniversary of the bombing, the city plans to seismically reinforce the building, without modifying its appearance, and refurbish the interior rest house area.

Through the accounts of survivors and photographs, the 70-year history will look back on the city prior to the atomic bombing and its recovery. A collection of photographs and a booklet providing a record of local memorial ceremonies for those who died in the A-bombing will also be published.

A-bomb survivors living overseas will be invited to attend the Peace Memorial Ceremony on August 6, 2015, and special exhibitions will be held at the Hiroshima City Library downtown and at the Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art in Minami Ward.

The city has designated 2015 as a year “to share Hiroshima’s desire for peace.” This summer the city solicited ideas for projects to mark the 70th anniversary of the A-bombing. A total of 219 suggestions were received from citizens and city employees, and the outline was put together based on those proposals. The city expects to add additional projects in the future.

Apart from the projects that have been outlined, the city also plans to undertake other initiatives to promote urban development in conjunction with the 70th anniversary of the A-bombing. The tangible and intangible aspects of these initiatives, which will focus on urban development for the 2045 100th anniversary of the A-bombing, are scheduled to be finalized in fiscal 2014.

(Originally published on November 28, 2013)