Okinawan Prefectural Forum discusses building “Futenma Park” on the site of Futenma Air Station for peaceful and disaster prevention purposes

Okinawan Prefectural Forum discusses building “Futenma Park” on the site of Futenma Air Station for peaceful and disaster prevention purposes

On February 15, panelists exchange opinions about the concept of “Futenma Park” at the Okinawa Convention Center in Ginowan.


February 22, 2012 Ryukyu Shimpo

On February 15 at the Okinawa Convention Center in Ginowan, hosted by the Prefectural Government and Ginowan City, the 8th Prefectural Forum was held to discuss the use of the land currently used by Futenma Air Station after it has been returned to local jurisdiction. Under the title of “Let’s think about Futenma Park (tentative name) to open up Okinawa’s future,” panelists talked about the “Futenma Park” concept and provided ideas to utilize the plentiful ground water resources and surrounding natural environment and to give it a status that promotes peace.

The panelists were Junichi Inada, president of Win Inc., Kuniharu Miyagi, professor at Okinawa International University, Yoko Yamaguchi from MUI Landscape Architecture & City Planning, and Shinichi Matayoshi, who is the chair of the Ginowan City Military Land Owners Union. Takayuki Ikeda, professor emeritus at the University of the Ryukyus, served as master of ceremonies in the forum, and about 250 people gathered to listen to the discussion.

Yamaguchi emphasized that with Ginowan being located between two rivers, it has a plentiful supply of water and so is a city with a water-environment. In some ways, Futenma Park would provide the physical structure for the city.

Matayoshi stated, “It should transform the negative aspects of the location’s legacy into something positive, a peace park.” He also talked about the Great East Japan Earthquake and suggested that Futenma serve as a local disaster-readiness site.

Miyagi said, “On the basis that the land will eventually be returned, prefectural and city residents should have a shared concept of what Futenma Park will be like.”

Before the discussion, Inada delivered a keynote speech on the theme of “Country building with parks and greening: national strategies of Singapore (Garden City).”

(English translation by T&CT, Megumi Chibana and Mark Ealey)

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