Tsunami-hit school to be preserved as memorial

Workers have started demolishing sections of an elementary school in northeastern Japan that will be preserved as a relic of the 2011 disaster.

Kadonowaki elementary school in Ishinomaki City, Miyagi Prefecture, was destroyed by a tsunami and later burned down in a fire.

The city government has decided to keep the three-story building as a reminder of the catastrophe.

But after taking maintenance costs and quake resistance into account, officials chose to make the building smaller.

On Monday, workers began using heavy machinery to remove the walls and windows. The work is scheduled to be completed this month.

The site will be open to the public in two years' time. But visitors will not be allowed to enter the building where ceilings have fallen down and frames are exposed. An observation spot will be built nearby.