Yokosuka City began the forced demolition of an abandoned home in Higashiuraga on March 13. This is the first forced demolition to be carried out in Kanagawa Prefecture and the third in Japan.
The wooden house, which was built sometime between the Taisho and early Showa periods, had a total floor area of 25 sqm. It was in a serious state of decay, with exterior cladding and doors coming loose in past typhoons. It became vacant after the owner passed away in 1988.
In 2012 the city received a complaint about the house and had repeatedly tried to contact relatives of the current owners, but with no success. The owners of the house did not own the land, and since the house did not appear on any cadastral maps, the heirs were not subject to annual property taxes.
The house was considered a hazard to the locals who often use the pathway running in front of the house as a shortcut to the station, and in December 2014 a removal order was issued.
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