TAKETOMBO is a social innovation venture dedicated in instigating social innovative activation to promote cultural sustainability, and divert attention and investment in aging and declining rural towns outside of glamorous Tokyo and Kyoto.
Aging population and rapid decline in rural population resulted in abandoned property and under-utilized public facilities. Up-keeping a 90-year old building (the ex-Hokuriku Bank) has become a financial burden for the local government. Aging structure that lacks seismic reinforcement also poses life-safety concern. Nanto City government's plan is to sell the property for private ownership. If no suitable bid received, the building will be demolished. In December 2018, Taketombo proposed to Mayor of Nanto City in bringing in overseas design work group to conducting feasibility and design research. Mr. Mayor Tanaka immediately agreed to postpone public bidding to allow concerning groups to conduct due diligence, the public can also hold proper hearing to collect feedback and reach a consensus in 2019.
However, the Government will cease ownership of the building by the end of 2019, and Inami Art Association will lose its museum space. If there is no undertaking of the building (retrofitting, renovation, management), demolition is still possible.
This is a grass-root / community-driven / educational initiative in exploring ways to protect and preserve cultural assets for historic town with social and economic challenges.
A design study group from Department of Interior Architecture specializing in Architecture Adaptive Reuse (Master of Design) is invited as the partner in the Inami design-study initiative. Visiting group will conduct qualitative to quantitative research, deep dive into unique cultural and social aspect of Inami, and propose design interventions to built environment as part of the due diligence; and to promote good design practice through adaptive reuse.