Aichi Prefecture to Build Major Convention Center at Nagoya Airport
posted on by Eric Stimson
The 2020 Olympics has thrown the future of Comic Market (or Comiket), Japan's biggest dōjinshi convention, into doubt. Tokyo Big Sight and Makuhari Messe, Tokyo's biggest convention centers, have been earmarked to hold Olympics events. There is a scarcity of other suitable events spaces in the Tokyo area. A Comiket questionnaire recently asked dōjin circles whether they would attend a Comiket held in Osaka or Nagoya.
On February 3, Aichi Prefecture (where Nagoya is located) announced that it would build a convention center on the artificial island in Tokoname where Nagoya's airport, Chūbu Centrair International Airport, is located. The building will take up 60,000 m² (645,835 square feet) and is scheduled to open in the fall of 2019. In a tweet, Aichi's governor, Hideaki Ohmura, wrote that the building will provide space for events displaced by the Olympics and that the prefecture would provide 360 million yen ($3.06 million) this year for its initial construction. The total cost of construction, including neighboring facilities, is estimated at 35 billion yen ($298 million).
Meanwhile, Nagoya has already been planning to build a convention center within the city itself — specifically, at its port, and 2 km (1.24 miles) away from another convention center, Portmesse Nagoya. That event space would cover 50,000 m², (538,196 square feet) compared to Portmesse Nagoya's 33,000 m² (355,209 square feet). It is unclear how Aichi Prefecture's plan will affect this project.
Comiket has always been held in the Tokyo area since its founding in 1975 and has used Tokyo Big Sight as its event space since that building opened in 1996. Tokyo Big Sight boasts roughly 80,000 m² (861,113 square feet) of exhibition space, while Makuhari Messe offers 72,000 m² (775,002 square feet). Intex Osaka, with its roughly 70,000 m² (753,474 square feet) of exhibition space, has also been suggested as an alternative convention center for Comiket.
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