Toyosu market relocation: Tokyo gov’t proposes a toxic-free plan in early-2018

July 22 , 2017

A public tour of the Toyosu wholesale fish market, on Jun. 14A public tour of the Toyosu wholesale fish market, on Jun. 14

On July 21, a meeting between agency heads of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government was held to discuss the relocation of the wholesale fish market from Tsukiji in Chuo Ward to Toyosu in Koto Ward, together with the subsequent redevelopment of the Tsukiji area. They concluded that conditions for the relocation would be ready by spring of 2018 and agreed upon a new set of targets aimed at decontaminating the soil at Toyosu so that it meets environmental safety standards.

The city plans to submit an updated environmental impact assessment necessary for the relocation by mid-August this year and conduct additional construction for a period of six months thereafter. The national approval process should be concluded by spring 2018, thus allowing relocation to begin. The actual dates of the market’s move will be decided upon through consultation with the parties involved.

In terms of targets to decontaminate the ground-level soil in Toyosu, apart from the additional construction efforts that will ensure that the land above ground is safe, an underground water management system will be introduced to improve water quality in the area on a mid- and-long-term basis.

The city also decided to move ahead with its plans to build a major road (Loop Road No.2) connecting the Olympic Village to Tokyo’s city center, aiming to complete it by the end of 2019 in time for the 2020 Games. Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike, who was present at the July 21 meeting, stressed that ensuring a smooth and safe relocation of the Tsukiji market Toyosu must be prioritized.

Governor Koike announced her views on the relocation issue in June, stating that the move to Toyosu should take place only after all the conditions necessary to run the market are in order. She also clarified her administration’s basic direction of redeveloping Tsukiji over the next five years.

“Ensuring the safety and security of the food [at Toyosu] is of utmost importance,” asserted Kunihiro Higashimura, secretary-general of Komeito caucus in the Tokyo Metropolitan Assemby, at the meeting. “We must check to make sure the city’s strategies are foolproof.”