Symbolic building that survived Japan's 2011 tsunami to be torn down

Locals expressed pity at the news

  106
The kamaboko factory (Photo by Twitter user Shiro Nishihata)

The kamaboko factory (Photo by Twitter user Shiro Nishihata)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A symbolic building that survived the forces of 2011’s disastrous earthquake and tsunami in Japan is set to face demolition.

To the woe of local residents, authorities are planning on tearing down the kamaboko factory whose red and white signboard, visible from a distance, has become symbolic in the area. The factory is the only building within the vicinity to have survived the 2011 earthquake-tsunami, which devastated Japan.

The factory is located in Yuriage, Miyagi Prefecture; a place where thousands of people once lived that is now largely home to birds and insects. Of the many victims of the disaster, over 700 were from Yuriage.

Up until now, the kamaboko factory has been conserved as a legacy of the tsunami, but authorities wish to remove it in order to build a park on the site. Locals have expressed pity at the news, with one elderly man claiming the area would become “lonely” without the building, according to CNA.

Another local man, whose son was born after disaster, said children can only come to understand the scale and impact of it through the remains left behind. It is regrettable the factory has to be removed, he said.

There is another nearby building which had its first floor flooded during the tsunami still standing, but it also faces demolition next year. CNA reports that soon, it is likely there will be no relics of the disaster left in Yuriage.

The 2011 tsunami was triggered by a 9.1 magnitude earthquake around 370 km northeast of Tokyo—the largest to ever hit Japan. It also triggered the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster. Nearly 20,000 people are confirmed to have died as a result, and thousands are still missing.