The Seoul City’s official residence will be transferred to a single house in Gahoe-dong and will begin full operations from February 8, 2015. The Seoul City Government had used the official residence in Hyehwa-dong for 33 years, from 1981, but had to transfer in line with the restoration of Seoul City Wall.
The transfer to Gahoe-dong was carried out upon the termination of a temporary official residence contract in Eunpyeong Newtown. The location was finally decided in consideration of efficient geographical and spatial conditions, usability as a space for external cooperation, and promotional effects of Bukchon Hanok Village.
With the straight-line distance from Seoul City Hall (less than 2.53㎞), the commute time and the travel time, when visiting the sites, will be reduced, enabling swift response times in emergency situations and acting as an efficient control tower for the safety of citizens.
Also, a garden will be used for receiving domestic and foreign officials and holding official events, being used as a medium for communication and external cooperation. Seoul attracted nearly 14 million foreign tourists last year; thus, Bukchon’s housing culture and beauty are expected to be promoted more actively at home and abroad.
The official residence in Gahoe-dong is a single house – total ground area of 660㎡, building area of 405.4㎡, one underground floor, and two above ground floors – with five rooms, one conference room, one living room, and a garden.
Seoul is a global city, which ranks sixth in terms of competitiveness, and is home to many embassies and multinationals; therefore, mutual trust and friendship could be reinforced further by holding official events for ambassadors and businessmen with respect to city diplomacy and investment attraction. In addition, representing ten million Seoul citizens, the Seoul mayoral position can be vulnerable to citizens, with complaints and conflicting interests; thus, safety should be secured while minimizing inconvenience to the neighborhood.