Published: April 30, 2010
Conservancy Plan for the Kamanza-cho “Machiya” Advances!
Since its vacancy several years ago, the “Cho-ie” Machiya (townhouse) located in Kyoto’s “Kamanza-cho” ward has been the subject of various conservancy ideas regarding its repair and future utilization. One suggestion put forth by Ms. Fusae Kojima, Executive Director of the NPO “Kyomachiya Council” -- located in the same Meirin School District of Kamanza-cho--recommended that their closely affiliated “Kyomachiya Architects” rent the townhouse as its new headquarters. With the objective of revitalizing Kyoto’s traditional townhouses, Ms. Kojima proposed applying for a World Monuments Fund (WMF) grant to help offset a portion of the repair costs for “Cho-ie.”
In acknowledgement of our network’s broad aims directed at the revitalization of Kyoto’s urban architectural heritage, Kamanza-cho “Cho-ie” Project members were granted subsidies from the WMF. At our general meetings in 2009 and 2010, we decided to accept Kyomachiya Architects to lease “Cho-ie” for its executive office and use as a base for future Kyomachiya renovations. While grant money from the WMF is being processed, a project team for the “Cho-ie” Kamanza-cho machiya has been formed to address such issues as repair details and expense breakdowns. Deliberations outlining particulars of the project with the relevant parties are ongoing.
Project Team, 1st Meeting
First, there was an explanation for the proposed plans from Kyomachiya Architects outlining renovation details and construction expenses. It was decided the building would not only be used by Kyomachiya Architects as its executive office and base for future machiya revitalization projects, but also be made available, as in the past, to Kamanza-cho residents to continue their Jizo Obon activities, officers’ meetings, general meetings, and other community affairs. Another topic of discussion was the allotment of WMF grant money for a portion of the renovation costs; further consultation is necessary to determine ways to finance the remaining costs, taxes, etc. It was also determined that renovation and construction costs should be reviewed regularly.
Upon receipt of WMF subsidies, restoration work is scheduled to commence in June and finish in October. Given time constraints, it will be necessary to finalize particulars as quickly as possible. The Project Team looks forward to a safe and successful completion of the Kamanza-cho “Cho-ie” renovation. While taking a leadership role, the Project Team also hopes to enlist and promote the ideas of local residents regarding in-house activities. We thank you for your cooperation and support.