Onomichi Castle, a replica of a traditional Japanese castle tower, will be demolished after sitting vacant for almost three decades.
The faux castle was built in 1964 by the Onomichi Chamber of Commerce to serve as a museum and sightseeing attraction. The reinforced concrete structure was designed to mimic Hirosaki Castle in Aomori. Its prominent position atop a hillside overlooking Onomichi Station quickly made it a local landmark, but its lack of historical significance drew some ire.
In 1992 the castle closed its doors. In 2018 the owner donated it to the city.
After a public bidding process, the city announced in November that a local construction firm has been chosen to demolish the castle at a cost of 130 million Yen (approx. 1.2 million USD). Onomichi City is in the process of upgrading the surrounding Senkoji Park, with the castle to be replaced with some kind of observation deck.
Demolition is expected to be completed by early 2021.
Source: The Chugoku Shimbun, November 22, 2019.
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