Plans to open a daycare facility this month in Ichikawa, Chiba Prefecture, have been scrapped amid rising complaints from local residents that the noise from children would spoil the neighborhood tranquility and cause possible traffic safety problems in the area.
A welfare organization based in Matsudo had planned to open a new private daycare facility on April 1 in a residential area in Ichikawa, in a bid to alleviate the city’s continuing problem of the so-called "taiki jido," or children of working parents who are on the waiting list to enter a nursery, Fuji TV reported.
However, strong opposition from residents began as soon as the project was announced last August, with many fearing that the new facility would have a negative impact on the peace and quiet in the area.
“We don’t want a large nursery in this quiet residential area,” a residents' group said, while others expressed concerns that the road leading toward the proposed daycare center is narrow and the crowds of children commuting there together with their parents may cause safety issues.
The organization, with the cooperation of Ichikawa City, conducted a number of meetings with the residents last year in a bid to convince them to accept the project. The organization suggested installing sound-proof windows and other means to block noise from the facility, but none of the suggestions were accepted. With no prospects to change residents' minds, construction was never launched and the organization decided to abandon the plan altogether last month.
The new facility would have accepted 108 children up to the age of five.
With 373 children on the waiting list as of April 2015, Ichikawa has the ninth largest number of "taiki jido" in the country.
“In times when there is a great shortage of daycare facilities, it is highly regrettable that we had to abandon this plan,” a representative of the Ichikawa municipal government said.© Japan Today