Ikoi no Ba summary
courtesy San Jose Redevelopment Agency. from Town Hall 1.24.4


Ikoi-no-ba are peaceful places to stop and spend some time.  They are places to relax, rest, be safe, and converse with others.

Ikoi-no-ba are places where we can learn about and reflect on Japantown and Japanese American history and culture -- agriculture, sports, evacuation, internment camps, war veterans, community leaders, and seasonal events in Japantown.


Ikoi-no-ba are places where we can reflect on our place in the universe:  the four seasons, the four elements Ė earth, wind, fire and water; the past, present, and future.

Ikoi-no-ba are places made of natural materials like wood.  They emphasize nature, using water or rocks.

Ikoi-no-ba are places that protect us from the elements, shading us from the sun or covering us from the rain, perhaps with a colorful canopy, and illuminating the darkness with lights.

Ikoi-no-ba are places that refer to our history and culture, with plaques; photo lithographs; benches with carved arms; three-sided sculptures, like the Civil Liberties educational monument; tiles made by children; tiles with names and commemorations; stone sculpture; neon lights; the Japantown business district logo; or interchangeable elements that can be updated.

Ikoi-no-ba are places of community pride that we will maintain.  The institutions that the ikoi-no-ba front can help maintain them.  We can also look for corporate sponsors or have an adopt-a-bench program.  We need sources of water nearby to wash the benches.  Tree species will be selected carefully so their roots or fruit donít damage the sites.

UPDATE: The first of the Ikoi no Ba to start work is the site working on  'Festivals'. Director of Lotus Preschool, Ms Lynne Yamaichi and her daughter Trisha will be coordinating with Peter Geraghty (SJRDA Project Manager), Brett Santo (artist), Ken Matsumoto (artist), San Jose Buddhist Church Betsuin Dharma School (20 students), Wesley United Methodist Church Sunday School (20 students, and the Lotus Preschool students! They will be painting on Saturday, Dec 4th and we hope to have the final project up in the Spring on 2005.