Ceremony marks grand opening of Hisao & Hiroko Taki Plaza

Tokyo Tech held a ceremony on April 7, 2021 to mark the grand opening of Hisao & Hiroko Taki Plaza (Taki Plaza), a new student exchange hub on Ookayama Campus.

Participants at grand opening ceremony of Hisao & Hiroko Taki Plaza

Participants at grand opening ceremony of Hisao & Hiroko Taki Plaza

Taki Plaza was constructed as a space where international and Japanese students connect, deepen ties, and create the future together. While certain components of the facility began operating in February, some final touches were required before the hub opened fully on April 8 for its intended users — students.

Hisao & Hiroko Taki Plaza

Joining Tokyo Tech President Kazuya Masu, other members of the board, faculty members of the Education and Research Council, and 14 members of the Taki Plaza Gardeners (TPG) student group at the ceremony were a number of prestigious guests. These included Chairman and Director Hisao Taki of Gurunavi Inc., the Tokyo Tech alumnus whose generous gift made Taki Plaza possible, his wife Hiroko, and Toshiki Meijo, Keita Watanabe, and Kosuke Tanaka representing Kengo Kuma and Associates, the company responsible for the design of the facility. President and Representative Director Yoshikazu Oshimi of Kajima Corporation, the company in charge of construction, President and Representative Director Minetoku Okamura of Daiei Denki Co., Ltd., Representative Director, President, and CEO Nagahiro Kuroda of Hibiya Engineering, Ltd., and Tokyo Tech Alumni Association President Kiyoto Ido were also present. Some 70 people in total attended the grand opening ceremony.

Masu began the ceremony with warm opening words directed at the donors, designers, and construction workers who made the Taki Plaza vision a reality. He expressed his delight with the completion of the facility, which complements existing landmarks such as the Main Building, Centennial Hall, and Tokyo Tech Front on Ookayama Campus.

Tokyo Tech President Kazuya Masu welcomes guests

Tokyo Tech President Kazuya Masu welcomes guests

Alumnus and donor Taki also gave a celebratory speech. He highlighted Tokyo Tech’s efforts in promoting diversity since his days at the Institute, and emphasized the quality and length of time spent together when creating strong bonds between students. He expressed hope that Taki Plaza would provide a place where student exchanges transcend individual backgrounds and nationalities. Finally, Taki presented his official message — written in English — to 2nd-year Transdisciplinary Science and Engineering student Risako Yanagase, the leader of the TPG student group.

Alumnus Taki (left) presenting personal message to TPG leader Yanagase

Alumnus Taki (left) presenting personal message to TPG leader Yanagase

(from left) Hiroko Taki, TPG leader Yanagase, Hisao Taki

(from left) Hiroko Taki, TPG leader Yanagase, Hisao Taki

The alumni association’s Ido and Taki Plaza’s chief architect Kengo Kuma also offered their best wishes — the former through a short speech, the latter via a video message.

Greeting from Tokyo Tech Alumni Association President Ido

Greeting from Tokyo Tech Alumni Association President Ido

Video message from chief architect Kuma

Video message from chief architect Kuma

In the latter part of the ceremony, leaders of the five TPG crews presented their current activities.

TPG crew

Activities presented

Presenter

Management crew

Efforts to create environment where students can easily interact

Yuno Noguchi

2nd year, Civil and Environment Engineering

Events crew

Planned events including annual Wakaba Festival to commemorate completion of Taki Plaza

Shota Matsuo

2nd year, Information and Communications Engineering

Community crew

Short-term project communities within Taki Plaza

Karyu Hase

2nd year, Mechanical Engineering

Communications crew

Website and free newspaper created by Taki Plaza Gardeners

Daiki Hayase

2nd year, Life Science and Technology

Production crew

Activities of design team, merchandise team, video production team, development team

Youta Fukutomi

2nd year, Architecture and Building Engineering

Production crew leader Youta Fukutomi

Production crew leader Youta Fukutomi

Communications crew leader Daiki Hayase

Communications crew leader Daiki Hayase

Community crew leader Karyu Hase

Community crew leader Karyu Hase

Events crew leader Shota Matsuo

Events crew leader Shota Matsuo

Management crew leader Yuno Noguchi

Management crew leader Yuno Noguchi

To complete the ceremony, the Taki Plaza Gardeners proudly gave participants a tour of their new facility.

The Tokyo Tech community is excited to witness the exchanges, innovations, and lifelong friendships that emerge from this new landmark hub on Ookayama Campus.

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