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HOME  > Past issues  > 2023 June 14 - 20  > Redevelopment project of Tokyo's 'sports mecca' goes against sports promotion
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2023 June 14 - 20 TOP3 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Redevelopment project of Tokyo's 'sports mecca' goes against sports promotion

June 14, 2023

Associated with a redevelopment project underway in the Meiji Gingu Gaien area (outer garden of the Meiji Shrine), six rubber-baseball grounds and a batting practice range will be closed and tennis courts will be available for use only by dues-paying members.

Japanese Communist Party member of the House of Councilors Kira Yoshiko on June 13 at a meeting of the House Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology Committee criticized the project for conflicting with the supposed government promotion of sports for the general public as it will reduce the number of sports facilities in the area.

Sports Minister Nagaoka Keiko gave an irresponsible response to Kira by saying that the project is administered by the landowner Meiji Shrine and therefore, "The ministry is not in a position to make a comment on the project."

Kira disputed the minister's remark, pointing out that Chichibunomiya Rugby Field owned by the Japan Sport Council (JSC) which the ministry is responsible for will be relocated according to the project and will concomitantly remove a baseball stadium. Kira said, "The ministry is not unrelated to the project."

Kira noted that concerned citizens are demanding a detailed explanation regarding the project, and said, "The ministry and JSC should responsibly provide an explanation to the general public."

Sports Minister Nagaoka said that the ministry will observe the situation of progress of consultations between the Tokyo metropolitan government, the Meiji Shrine, and parties concerned.

Past related article:
> Kasai calls for protection of ginkgo trees in Tokyo's urban oasis [February 22, 2023]
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