“Seoul’s Childcare Program ‘Aidolbomi’ Reaches over 560,000 Users”

The Seoul Metropolitan Government’s childcare program “Aidolbomi” has reached over 560,000 users. A whole page of The Hankyoreh was also recently dedicated to childcare counselors. There is a lot of helpful information out there, especially on the Official Homepage of the Seoul Metropolitan Government, so make sure to visit us often!

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Seoul’s Tayo Bus

Poor Pororo!

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“Can true love change?”

This is quite an appropriate caption for the picture of poor, lonely Pororo.

Tayo Bus, the new star of the city, is a policy made for the citizens, by the citizens.
Cartoon characters may change, but my love for the citizens of Seoul never will.

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“A Thank You Note from Chris Evans to Seoul and Korea”

Chris Evans, one of the heroes in Avengers 2, recently tweeted a thank you message to his fans in Seoul and Korea.

After filming their last scene on Gangnam-daero, the cast and crew of Avengers 2 finished their work and left Seoul. Thankfully there were no big accidents or other traffic disturbances during their stay.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your cooperation and support of the filming and apologize for any inconvenience.

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The Blue Sky in Seoul

Yesterday and today, the sky was blue over Seoul, with little white clouds scattered here and there.

A few days ago, I signed a cooperation agreement with Mayor Wang Anshun of Beijing, to work together to improve the air quality of Seoul and Beijing, as well as all of Northeast Asia. I hope the sky over Beijing is as blue as ours was today. All in all, the sky is connected as one, so when their sky is blue, ours will be too!

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A Message for Me on Facebook

I recently received a Facebook message.

I should have shared it with you earlier!

The message contained an important reminder about Planting Day.

I also planted flowers and trees today.
It was a great morning in Seoul, waking up to the chirping of birds.
I often find that when your morning is happy, your entire day is happy.
The following link is a video clip that an ad-making club produced to remind us all of the meaning of Planting Day, which is no longer a holiday and has been gradually fading from our minds.

The video link was sent to me along with a message that read:
“I would very much appreciate it if you could post this for people to watch. Thank you.”
I am more than happy to post and thank you for your reminder of such an important day!

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Yongsan Park

Yesterday I stopped by Yongsan Park.

The surrounding area is still being used as a US army base. Yesterday, I saw children and families spending time in the park. As I was walking around, I smelled something horrible, so I asked people where the smell was coming from. People told me it was coming from the US army waste disposal site that was located nearby. I asked one of the officials at the Seoul Metropolitan Government to try to reach an agreement with the US army to move the site or, at the very least, have someone take care of the garbage.

When the US army base reverts back to us in the future, it will be refurbished and integrated into Yongsan Park for our citizens’ enjoyment. There are still a number of relics and structures there from the Joseon Dynasty, the Japanese colonial period, and early modern Korea that would definitely need to be registered as UNESCO Cultural Heritages. With the addition of land from the current base, Yongsan Park will be turned into an even better park than Central Park in New York City. I’m very excited just at the thought of it!

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A Visit to Beijing, China

I’m home safe and sound after a day trip to Beijing, China.

“Pork belly,
Scoundrel!
The culprit
Of belly fat.”

-Fine Dust, a poem by Won Soon

That is my attempt at parodying the popular poems in “Seoul City, Seoul Poems” by the poet Ha Sang-Wook. Fine dust has now become such a part of our daily lives that we no longer think of it as a serious problem, but that doesn’t make it any less of a concern.

“When Blocked by a Mountain, Make a Tunnel; When Blocked by a River, Build a Bridge”

As this Chinese proverb says, there is always a solution to our problem—we just need to find it.

Although many people are concerned about the air quality there, I visited China because I didn’t want to turn a blind eye to the sufferings of our citizens. While I was there, I signed a cooperation agreement with Beijing Mayor Wang Anshun, visited a pollutant observatory, and attended a forum on air quality with experts from both countries. I also had the privilege of being interviewed by “Renmin Mang” and Xinhwa News.

I’m sure you have heard of the old Korean saying, “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”. We have now taken our first step down the long road toward cleaner air. Just like a hard journey is made easier with the help of a friend, I believe that together, Seoul and Beijing will be able to solve this air pollution problem.

I hope you all have a clean, clear night and pleasant dreams!




“Mayor Park Won Soon Listens to You Online”

“1,691”

That’s a number that I feel bad about.
I hope you know that I didn’t mean for that to happen.

So as a countermeasure, I made a Facebook Page!
www.facebook.com/hope2gether
So far, the page has more than 40,000 likes.
Thanks to the people who have taken the time to like and comment on posts, Seoul is always awake and changing.

Let’s keep the conversation going online!

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International Block Paving Forum

“What good is a city if it can’t even manage the construction and maintenance of its pavement?” This is what I had often thought while walking around Seoul before I became mayor.

I believe this is what everyone in Seoul has thought as they walked along sidewalks that were uneven, broken, and rough.

To address these problems, we instituted the “10 Commandments of Sidewalks”, which include the “real-name system,” “one-strike-out system,” “no road construction in winter,” and “walking buddy.” This year, in celebration of the 3rd anniversary of the commandments, we are hosting the International Block Paving Forum. At the forum, we will showcase permeable paving blocks and also hold a water circulation expo. Come and experience the exciting changes taking place in Seoul!

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“Seoul’s Tayo Bus”

The man in the picture below is Lim Jin-wook, the president of Dong-A Transportation, a company that operates the public buses of Seoul. He is the one who suggested that we design the buses in Seoul to look like “Tayo, the Little Bus,” a cartoon character that is extremely popular among young children in Korea. When we met, President Lim shared other great ideas he had to help revolutionize the buses of Seoul.

We discussed installing features in the buses that children would enjoy, such as making Tayo’s eyes move, and using Tayo the Little Bus and the Elephant Buses for special events on Children’s Day at the Seoul Zoo as well as increasing the number of buses in Seoul to over 100.

Innovation is always a part of “Bus No. 151”, operated by Dong-A Transportation. I believe a good administrator listens to the ideas of innovators and helps carry them out. Aren’t you excited about all the coming changes happening in Seoul?

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Seoul Living Design Fair

I just got back from the Seoul Living Design Fair, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. Today was the last day of the fair, and it was packed with people!

This year, the fair saw 300,000 visitors in 5 days—a record-breaking high! These high numbers show how our standards of living have risen over the years. When the fair first began, it was visited mostly by designers and art students. Now, most of the visitors are middle-class housewives and buyers.

In the future, I hope the fair can grow even bigger and include more designers from various Asian countries. Although the event is hosted by a private company called Design House, I hope that, with the support of the Seoul Metropolitan Government, we can turn it into an international event!


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“Spring Temple Food Feast Hosted by Buddhist Nun Seonjae”

Today I had the honor of enjoying a spring temple food feast, hosted by Seonjae, a Buddhist nun.

While I was at the temple I realized that food does not simply fill the stomach, but also acts as medicine for the entire body. I also learned that food represents the unity of the universe and nature. So, if your children are suffering from eczema or preparing for their college entrance exams, you should definitely go to the feast!

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