Thursday, May 20, 2010
Damage to Gwangju's underground shopping center after roof partially collapses.
I was alarmed to read on Facebook that Gwangju's Geumnam Underground Shopping Center (광주금남지하상가) had collapsed on Wednesday, but the little news that's out so far shows scale of the damage is considerably less, and that there have not yet been any injuries reported.
At 5:38 pm on Wednesday the 19th, according to the Dong-A Ilbo and Newsis, a cooling tower across the rotary from the Old Provincial Hall fell over, causing the roof to collapse and damaging three stores in the underground shopping center that stretches between a couple subway stations downtown.
Articles out now don't say which stores were damaged---a Korean news article wouldn't mention that anyway---but you might be able to piece together something if you're familiar with the layout of the shopping center. The Dong-A Ilbo has photographs taken both above and below ground, and Yonhap provides a video report that looked promising but which won't play on my computer.
Two days earlier thousands of people were gathered along the huge Geumnam-no near the Old Provincial Hall to mark the 30th anniversary of the Gwangju Uprising. The area around there is being renovated into a pedestrian plaza as part of a controversial "Hub City of Asian Culture" (아시아문화중심도시) plan that will give a facelift to the most cultural part of the city.
If readers in the area have any updates or pictures, please pass them along.