A beloved local landmark, without a buyer for its restoration and reuse, Kagawa Prefectural Gymnasium will likely be demolished.
A beloved landmark, the Kagawa Prefectural Gymnasium, Japan, hosted local sports events for 50 years until a leak in the building’s roof led the facility to close in 2014. The gymnasium was designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Tange Kenzo (1913–2005), whose designs combining traditional Japanese and modernist forms had a profound influence on architecture in Japan and abroad. For the Kagawa Prefectural Gymnasium, Tange used modern materials to evoke the form of a traditional Japanese wooden barge.
The site was included on the 2018 World Monuments Watch to support local advocates, including Japan’s architecture community, in their campaign to advocate for the preservation of the Kagawa Prefectural Gymnasium and their vision for its future use.
The construction of a new sports facility in Takamatsu, scheduled for completion by 2024, threatens the future of Tange’s mid-century landmark. Without a buyer for the restoration and reuse of the gymnasium, it will likely be demolished. Local activists continue to advocate to preserve the gymnasium, believing that the building’s architectural heritage makes it worthy of being preserved so that it can be handed down to future citizens of Kagawa prefecture.
The survival of modernist architecture worldwide requires ongoing vigilance and support. Join our partners in their call to preserve Kagawa Prefectural Gymnasium.