On June 2, the Nagoya Port Authority announced plans to remove the last remaining structures from the former Italian Village. Demolition is expected to cost 330 million.
The Italian Village shopping mall opened in Nagoya’s port side area in 2005, the same year that Turin was announced as one of Nagoya’s sister cities. The 31,000 sqm site included a reproduction of a Venice canal complete with authentic gondolas imported from Italy, a replica of the San Marco Square, a replica of the Statue of David, and a replica of the Bocca della Verita. Many of the 80 specialty stores featured Italian goods and groceries.
The mall was developed under a private finance initiative between the Nagoya Port Authority and Cest la vie Holdings Corporation. In its first year of operations, it had over 4.2 million visitors. By 2008, this number had halved and the operators filed for bankruptcy.