On Oct. 2, Seoul City decided to temporarily open the lower part of the nation’s tallest 123 storey-high New Lotte World Tower conditionally. The city government has delayed the decision for four months, despite expert assessments that the temporary opening appears to have no problem, because of concerns over possible accidents. In the meantime, Lotte suffered severe financial damages from the postponement. The company has employed staff for the New Lotte World since early May.
Seoul City’s conditional approval is to assuage the people who are opposed to the opening and stop the social losses caused by the completed yet empty building from snowballing. As a kind of mute pressure on Lotte, it implies that the approval can be revoked if any problem is found regarding building safety, traffic, or the water level of Seokchon Lake.
The biggest concern on the part of Lotte is traffic. The number of visitors is estimated to be around 200,000 per day, which means the area could turn into a huge parking lot. In view of this, Seoul City included cancellation of the approval and closure of the parking lot into its provisional approval in the case of worsening traffic conditions.
The cause for the decreasing lake water level has yet to be found, either. The research results are scheduled to become available in May next year. The conditions put forth by the city government also include measures such as cancelling approval, halting construction, restriction of building use, and the like in the event of an accident or increase in the possibility of an accident.