Exhibits in east building of Peace Memorial Museum to increase due to delay in reopening of main building

by Kanako Noda, Staff Writer

The City of Hiroshima announced on December 21 that it will exhibit more A-bombed items being temporarily exhibited in the Peace Memorial Museum’s east building as a result of the delay in the reopening of the main building. The main building is being renovated and was scheduled to reopen in July 2018. But now the reopening is expected to be delayed until spring 2019.

The museum’s east building, where renovation work was completed in April of this year, mainly exhibits documents and photos that convey the inhumane nature of nuclear weapons and Hiroshima’s revival after the atomic bombing. However, because the main building is currently closed due to renovation work, the east building is temporarily exhibiting some A-bombed items on the first floor to help visitors comprehend the catastrophic conditions that followed the atomic bombing. The City of Hiroshima is now considering locating some exhibit cases to unused space in the first basement of the east building and increasing the number of exhibits of A-bombed artifacts from 2018 onwards. In an interview with the press held on December 21, Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui said, “We have to improve the exhibition of the A-bombed items. To this end, we should use the east building in an effective manner so that the horrifying reality of the atomic bombing can be fully conveyed.”

As a result of the inspection, which discovered some defects in construction work performed in the past, it was decided that the main building will undergo preservation efforts on the building’s design and some additional work. Earthquake-resistant repair work, which was expected to be finished by the end of July 2019, also requires a design review, which will delay the completion of the work. Mr. Matsui said, “The Peace Memorial Museum is an important facility because it will continue conveying messages of peace for many years to come. Even though it will take some time to complete this work, we have to ensure that the renovations are completed precisely, according to the design.” The city expects that the seismic repair work will be completed in time for the Peace Memorial Ceremony in August 2020 to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the atomic bombing.

(Originally published on December 22, 2017)