Inside the Nuclear Ghost Towns of Japan

This piece fromDer Spiegel takes you inside the abandoned cities of Japan that were forced to clear out amid threats of nuclear meltdown.

Towns within a 20-km radius of the nuclear plant damaged by the March tsunami have all been cleared out, though some residents have returned in secret to collect belongings.

"There were 13,400 people living in Odaka before the accident. Today it's a ghost town, so quiet that one can hear the beating wings of crows flying overhead. As a last sign of life in this dead city, the traffic lights along the main road are still working. Like disco lights at a party that's been over for hours, they are still switching from green to yellow to red and back to green again.

Tens of thousands of Japanese who once lived in the danger zone around the stricken reactor are in the same position. Many suddenly had to give up all of their important and meaningful possessions. Others were allowed to stay but are now being told not to leave their houses."

Full Story: A Visit to Japan's Nuclear Ghost Towns

Comments

Prepare for the AICP Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $245
AICP CTP Storefont Display

The first online AICP* CTP exam prep class

Are you ready to take the AICP* Certified Transportation Planner exam?
Priced at $245 for May exam!

Essential Readings in Urban Planning

Planning on taking the AICP* Exam? Register for Planetizen's AICP * Exam Preparation Course to save $50.
$369 includes free shipping!
Wood necklace with city map

City Necklaces

These sweet pendants are engraved on a cedar charm with a mini map of selected cities. The perfect gift for friends and family or yourself!
$28.00