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Land clearance problem halt island bridge work

Date Posted: 2004-06-24

Kouri-Jima is an island situated near Nakijin Village’s Unten Harbor in the north.

A bridge is under construction between Kouri-Jima and Yagaji-Jima, Nago City. It was to have been completed next Spring.

Work is stopped on Warumi Bridge, the 315 meter long bridge that will connect the two. Okinawa Prefecture has run into problems getting Tokyo-based land owners to settle a deal granting them the land.

Although everyone expected the transfer to go smoothly, and the bridge to open next year, officials now say it looks like it may take at least five years to get the land.

The Tokyo owners don’t want to sell the land to Okinawa Prefecture, so the local government is being forced to take compulsory public domain measures to buy the land. Eventually, the government will win, and the bridge finished.

It currently takes 37 minutes to go from Nakajin to Nago. Once the new bridge is in place, travel time is reduced to less than 20 minutes.

Nakajin Village’s mayor says “I want Tokyo owners to cooperate with the Prefecture. We need this bridge. Without the land, the Kourijima bridge opening cannot happen.”

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