The Daily Parker

Politics, Weather, Photography, and the Dog

So long, and thanks for all the fish

The Economist reports this week that the Tsujiki fish market will close at the end of November:

Squeezed between the Sumida river and the Ginza shopping district, Tsukiji is creaking at the seams. Some 60,000 people work under its leaky roof, and hundreds of forklifts, carrying everything from sea urchins to whale meat, careen across bumpy floors. The site’s owner, the city government, wants it moved.

The final blow was Tokyo’s successful bid to host the 2020 Olympics. A new traffic artery will cut through Tsukiji, transporting visitors to the games’ venues. Part of the site will become a temporary press centre, says Yutaka Maeyasui, the executive in charge of shifting the market. Our time is up, he says, glancing around his decrepit office. The site has become too small, old and crowded. An earthquake could bring the roof down.

I'm planning to re-visit Tokyo in October, so I might just get in under the wire. When I visited in November 2011, I didn't get up early enough to watch the fish auction (which starts around 4am); this autumn, I may force myself to see one of the last ever.

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