Ceremony to Commemorate the Start of Construction of the New Building (Tentative Name)

Update: May 28, 2021

ICU is constructing the New Building (tentative name) and held the ceremony to commemorate the start of construction on Friday, May 21.

To realize one of the ICU's mission, the New Building will be constructed as a symbol of bringing together diverse knowledge from the sciences and the humanities. It will be built on the west side of the University Hall and the south side of the current Science Hall. All facilities and functions currently located in the Science Hall, including the faculty offices and laboratories, will be relocated to the four-story New Building. It will also accomodate five large classrooms to be mainly used for the first- and second-year students. The five research institutes --the Institute for Educational Research and Service, the Social Science Research Institute, the Institute for the Study of Christianity and Culture, the Institute of Asian Cultural Studies, and the Peace Research Institute-- and some of the administrative offices will also be relocated to the New Building. Moreover, "Hub Central," a common space for students of all fields, including humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences, will be provided. The main features of the New Building are hybrid air conditioning, which uses sunlight and natural wind in accordance with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and a floor layout that can be easily changed as needed in the future. Once the functions are transferred to the New Building, the Science Hall will undergo major restoration works because of deterioration from 54-years of aging is visible at various places.

The ceremony was attended by ICU officials and those involved with the construction work. It was led by Rev. Shoko Kitanaka, and in the speeches for the ceremony, Ryoichi Arai, Managing Trustee for Financial Affairs, who is responsible for the plan, and Rev. Kitanaka expressed their gratitude and their feelings for the work on behalf of ICU. Mr. Arai thanked all those from within and outside the university who were involved over the past two years, from the coordination of the basic plan in AY2019 through the building design, for their great efforts. He also expressed his wish that the New Building will encourage interdisciplinary learning, the feature of ICU's liberal arts education, as all students, whether they major in natural sciences or other fields share the same New Building with numerous research institutes. "New doors will not open unless people meet and academic disciplines cross over the boundaries," said Rev. Kitanaka. She prayed that the New Building will become an intersection of people and research and that the vision of the ICU founders will be realized.

Dr. Hirotaka Takeuchi, Chair of ICU Board of Trustees, representing ICU, and Mr. Kengo Kuma, representing Nihon Sekkei, Inc. and Kengo Kuma and Associates Joint Venture responsible for design and supervision of the construction, and others participated in the groundbreaking ritual.

Subsequently, ICU President Shoichiro Iwakiri and Dr. Takeuchi addressed the attendees. After commenting about a remarkable coincidence in constructing the New Building as a physical space in the COVID-19 Pandemic Era which promoted virtual space, President Iwakiri expressed the hope that the New Building will encourage exchange of people and embody ICU's philosophy. Dr. Takeuchi once again expressed his gratitude to those who are involved in the construction work.

The New Building is scheduled to be completed in late November of 2022.

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