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Hiroshima Orizuru Tower

Projecting hopes for peace from Hiroshima to the world

Officially opened in September 2016, Hiroshima Orizuru Tower is located beside the A-Bomb Dome in Hiroshima. The 50 meter tall tower is one of the few tall buildings around the Peace Memorial Park and offers a great view of the surroundings, including the less commonly seen view of the A-Bomb Dome from above.

The idea to convert the existing office building into a mixed facility tower was planted in 2010, and construction on Hiroshima Orizuru Tower was completed in 2016. The main areas for visitors to the tower are the cafe and souvenir select shop on street level, the observation deck on the top floor and the interactive multimedia zone on the 12th floor, while the rest of the floors in between are office space.

Given Hiroshima's reputation as a creators' town, it is also the pride of the city to have local talent playing a large role in the construction of Hiroshima Orizuru Tower. Wood used in the building was sourced from either Hiroshima or nearby Okayama, while local artists provided the artwork that line the walkway inside. Sanbuichi Hiroshi, an architect born and based in Hiroshima, designed the building's distinctive looks. How buildings blend and interact with their environments plays a large role in Sanbuichi's designs, and the tower was no different.

The observation deck on the top floor is open to the elements, allowing one to feel the wind as you take in the panoramic view. Visitors choose to take the elevator or walk up a spiraling walkway up to the top. Walking up gives one the chance to view the artwork which tells a story of a fictional family and projects what life may be like for them from then on.

On the 12th floor, just one level below the observation deck, is the interactive multimedia zone laid out in the open-plan floor. Large glass panels protect one from the elements. Visitors can see the actual ground zero where the atomic bomb denoted about 600 meters above ground, as well as the A-Bomb Dome and the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum in the distance. In the middle of the room lies the interactive multimedia which provides fun for people of all ages. There is also a timelapse showing Hiroshima city from after the war and envisions what it would be like about a hundred years from now.

The Orizuru Square on the 12th floor is a station where visitors can purchase origami paper to fold orizuru, or paper cranes. These cranes can be kept as a souvenir or dropped down into the Orizuru Wall, a glass panel wall that will be filled up with these folded cranes in time to come.

Moving down to the souvenir select shop and the Akushu cafe on street level, where visitors can choose from about a thousand made-in-Hiroshima products as well as take a rest at the cafe. The souvenir select shop is testament to Hiroshima's reputation as a creator's town judging from the vast number of products from all over the prefecture (although Mazda car products are not available there). These two areas are open to the public and do not require an admission ticket unlike the observation deck and the multimedia zone on the 12th and top floors.

Hiroshima Orizuru Tower is a stone's throw away from the A-Bomb Dome as well as the Genbaku Dome-mae stop if arriving by streetcar. Otherwise, it is also an easy stroll from the main shopping district. Entry to the 12th and top floor requires an admission ticket which costs 1700 yen per adult and can be used for repeated entry in one calendar day.