All Eyes on Seoul

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All Eyes on Seoul

The city of Seoul is starting to panic because Samchunggak,a pub in northen Seoul wasn't designated as an important cultural property.

The city of Seoul was looking foward to having Samchunggak designated as a cultural property but when cultural committee members took a tour of the site on March 30, the members decided that the place wasn't worth preserving.

The city complained, saying that the committee members failed to understand the high cultural awareness of the citizens of Seoul.

Civic groups insisted the 28 year-old site needed to be preserved because of its great scenery and historic importance. Samchunggak was the site of Korea-Japan meetings in the past.

But an official from Seoul City Hall disagreed saying that Seoul City Hall had never had any interest in preserving Samchunggak until environmental groups raised the issue.

The same situation is going on with other modern buildings. Poongnaptosung(Earthen Fortress) in Poongnap-dong, Songpa-gu, is thought to be an early fortress of the Paekjae Kingdom, is being destroyed. Kookdo Theater, which was the birth place of Korean movies, has already been torn down. During this process, Seoul hasn't shown any efforts to stop the destruction of important buildings. Even until the 1970s, over 100 buildings with cultural and historical importance were selected, but today over half are gone.

The citizens of Seoul will now keep their eyes on how the city of Seoul handles this problem. If this case doesn't get handled right, Seoul will have a lot of problems when they announce a 'modern buildings preservation rule.' The city will have nothing to say when people complain it violates their private ownership rights.

by Yang Young-yu

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