Adapting European-style, Harajuku Station will be rebuilt after the 2020 Summer Olympics and Paralympics. (Image via SoraNews24)

Goodbye! Harajuku Station to be demolished after the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics

On Tuesday, East Japan Railway (JR East) announced that the old, wooden Harajuku Station will be demolished after the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics. The decision came after JR East had consulted the Shibuya Ward – where the station is located – and local retail associations.

The reason for the demolishment is because the wooden structure of Harajuku Station is prone to fire.

However, that does not mean that the station will completely vanish. East also unveiled the plan to build Harajuku Station with an all-new design, currently being built adjacent to the old station. Nevertheless, the Japanese people can bid the good ol’ station adieu.

The current Harajuku Station had been operational for more than nine decades, having been established in 1924.

The plan to rebuild Harajuku Station dated back to 2016 when JR East also made the same announcement ahead of the 2020 Summer Olympics and Paralympics in Japan, hoping to merge the old design with the new one.

In honor of the old Harajuku Station, JR East is trying to recreate the European look of the Harajuku Station with fire-resistant material. Nonetheless, talking about keeping it original, the new Harajuku Station will have two stories and a new entrance on the Jingu side of the station will make the new station look nothing like the old one.

Most Japanese people reacted with sorrow. They said that the JR East should pay more attention to the historical value of the Harajuku Station. Instead of demolishing it, the majority of the Japanese people wanted JR East to dismantle the station carefully and relocate it somewhere else.

The new station is going to be finished by March 2020, but the completion date will be in August 2021.