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Controversy continues over Awase tideland development

Date Posted: 2007-07-18

The only thing everyone attending a meeting involving a controversial Awase tideland area development project could agree upon was that they disagree about everything.

Developers are working on a massive landfill and resort project that is planned to the shore of Okinawa City’s Awase area. They contend the project is critical for Okinawa City’s future economic viability. “Without developing this area, the whole city will be left wilting in the future,” one participant noted, “while other areas of Okinawa prosper. Besides, Okinawa City has no beachfront resort.”

Opponents at Saturday’s meeting argued the tidelands must be preserved as a natural reserve, charging that development would completely destroy the Awase tidelands’ unique natural environment. Developers contend they can both create the new facilities and preserve the natural environment.

Pro-business groups, including the Okianwa City Chamber of Commerce, Okinawa City East Seashore Resort Development Promotion Association, and Pride Awase, are all demanding the projects move forward.

A final report on the project will be complete by July 28th, and will be turned over to Mayor Mitsuko Tomon.
She will then work with city administrators on resolving the dispute.

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