44.Nagoya Castle Part1

Do we really need a wooden Main Tower?

What is happening?

Nagoya City’s Policy

Nagoya Castle, which is located in Nagoya City, is very popular. Its Main Tower with the Golden Grampuses on the top is one of the most famous symbols of the city. The Main Tower is not original but was apparently restored in 1959. The original one was burned down due to the Bombing of Nagoya in 1945 during World War II.

The location of the castle

Takashi Kawamura, the mayor of Nagoya City has been suggesting the construction of a wooden Main Tower which would have the same design as the original one. The present Main Tower is over 60 years old and was found to have poor earthquake resistance. He stresses it is a good opportunity for replacing the present concrete Main Tower with an almost original wooden one. He also says the city can do this as it has a lot of pictures, drawings, and other records of the original one before it was burned down. He tells the citizens a wooden Main Tower gives great power to the city and boosts tourism. Many of the citizens support him, but it is not that simple.

A picture of the original Main Tower (licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons)

Claim of Agency for Cultural Affairs

Kawamura needs the approval of the Agency for Cultural Affairs before the launch of the replacement, because the castle has been designated as a Special National Historic Site. The agency claims that Nagoya City should investigate and repair the stone wall base for the Main Tower before the replacement. The base is original but has been left damaged from the fire of the bombing. It is more important for the agency to repair the base than to restore a wooden Main Tower.

The stone wall base for the Main Tower
The part damaged from the fire of the bombing

The present Main Tower is actually a modern building used as a museum with an elevator. If the building is replaced with a wooden building using the original design, this will not be able to have the elevator. Some groups of disabled people argue that the building must be accessable. In addition, the government will also not allow such a building to be used as the museum, even though the wooden building would have sprinklers to avoid fires, and reinforced woods to protect from earthquakes. It will also have regulations for visitors, such as an admission limit.

The present Main Tower has elevators outside and inside.

Other Opinions

Others suggest that the design of the wooden Main Tower should be changed even if it is different from the original one. It can have the elevator and emergency facilities. Some of the officials agree with it, but Kawamura says a new Main Tower must be built in the original design. Few people say that a wooden Main Tower is not needed, instead, the present Main Tower should be renovated for the anti-earthquake construction and the renewal of the museum. A wooden Main Tower will cost nearly 500 million US$, while the renovation would need about 65 million US$ (in the actual case of Osaka Castle). The present Main Tower itself can also be a cultural property. Indeed, the present concrete Main Tower of Osaka Castle became a National Registered Tangible Cultural Property recently and is 90 years old now.

The Main Tower of Osaka Castle which is a National Registered Tangible Cultural Property

To be continued in “Nagoya Castle Part2”

投稿者: Yuzo

城巡りが好きなYuzoです。日本には数万の城があったといわれています。その内の200名城を手始めにどんどん紹介していきます。 I'm Yuzo, I love visiting castles and ruins. It is said that there were tens of thousands castles in Japan. I will introduce you top 200 castles and ruins of them, and more!

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