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Floating 1978 Expo Hulk Free for Carting Away

Date Posted: 2000-09-08

The rusting landmark to the 1978 Okinawa Ocean Expo, Aquapolis, is offered for free to anyone who is willing to move the floating hulk away. Okinawa Prefecture, local municipalities and private companies jointly own Aquapolis. It was originally built as a showpiece to the Ocean Expo intended to demonstrate how future generations possibly would live in harmony with the ocean.

However, it fell on hard times and was closed to the public five years ago because of safety concerns. Over the years there have been several plans to move the giant floating structure to Naha or another location where it would become a theme park or restaurant complex to attract tourists, but all have come to a nil, mainly because of prohibitive costs.

To scrap it is not very palatable option to its owners either. They have calculated that it would cost at least 800 million to remove and scrap the structure. There are reportedly some interested parties in mainland Japan and Micronesia who have expressed interest in aquiring the Aquapolis should it be available for free. So far, no one has come up with a concrete offer.

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