Nago Avenue becomes a transit mall

Nago Avenue becomes a transit mall

The members of the Nago Avenue Association promoted the transit mall on July 12 to help revitalize Nago.

July 17, 2013 Ryukyu Shimpo

The Nago Avenue Association turned Nago Avenue into a transit mall limiting car traffic on July 21. They held various events providing food, music and relaxation. The association plans to hold such events once every two months. Its head, Hitoshi Urasaki, said, “We want to continue these events and to attract regular customers.”

The mall was about 300 meters long, running from the Nago Crossroads to the Hinpun banyan tree. Nago Avenue and the places around it become a transit mall every year at the time of the cherry festival, but this is the first time the avenue has become a transit mall on a regular basis.

People enjoyed music such as soul and jazz and eating local foods. Making smoothies and listening to soothing harp performances under the banyan tree were also popular. The association also plans to set up equipment for children.

The completion of a large commercial building has contributed to an increasing number of vacant stores in the avenue. The association ceased to meet temporarily until young business operators got it going again in 2007. Urasaki said, “Families can enjoy these events. I want lots of people to come along.”

Naoko Tamaki, who belongs to the NPO HiCO, which promotes city planning with the association members, said, “We do not want them to be one-off events.” She went on to say, “We want the city to flourish by attracting people in after the events.”

The association turned the avenue into a transit mall from 4:00 to 9:00 p.m. on July 21. They plan to hold more events on September 29, November 24 and January 25.

(English translation by T&CT, Mark Ealey)

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