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Fight against bicycle gambling facility goes on

Date Posted: 1998-05-18

A fight to prevent construction of a satellite bicycle race gambling facility in Hiyane, Okinawa, between the company planning to operate the facility and local residents who vehemently oppose its construction continues in Naha District Court. The court held the 23rd hearing of the case, Monday.

1985 residents of the area have signed the petition to the court to halt the project which they say will transform their quiet neighborhood to a playground for gangsters and other anti-social elements of the society, increase traffic and possibility of accidents, and set a bad example for children attending various schools in the neighborhood and ultimate become a cause for juvenile delinquency.

The company lawyers counter that there are nothing in the law that says such a facility is illegal. They point out that they have all necessary permits. They also provided the court with plans of establishing security measures and a large parking lot for their customers. All this would guarantee that the facility would have a minimal impact on the lives of local residents.

The residents groups wowed to continue their fight until the company gives up. Whether they will succeed is anybody's guess, but everyone involved agrees that the fight has still long ways to go.

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