Gwanghwamun Square in Seoul has completed nearly two years of construction, and will return to the public again from tomorrow (6th).

It is twice as wide as before, and there are more trees, so now it has a park-like atmosphere.

However, the Seoul Metropolitan Government has said that it will ban gatherings and demonstrations at Gwanghwamun Square in the future.

Reporter Kim Bo-mi covered the story.


Protesters march on both sides of Sejong-daero.

Gwanghwamun Square, which opened in the heart of Seoul in 2009, has established itself as a symbolic space to gather and express the will of citizens.

Gwanghwamun Square is transformed into a new shape after one year and nine months of construction.

It used to be isolated like an island in the middle of Sejong-daero, but now it has doubled in size as it expands toward the Sejong Center for the Performing Arts.

In the past, you had to cross the crosswalk to get to the square.

Now it is adjacent to the pedestrian path, so you can easily access the square.

It fills a quarter of the total area with greenery, making it look like a park.

Waterscape facilities such as a fountain in the shape of Hangeul and the 'Historical Waterway' engraved with the history from the founding of the Joseon Dynasty were also built.

[Lim Yu-jin / Seongnam-si, Gyeonggi-do: There are trees, so one phytoncide, I think it is good because it allows people to rest.]

As it was a place where state agencies of the Joseon dynasty were lined up in the past, the historicity was also strengthened.

Cultural assets such as the 'Saheonbu Gate Site' discovered during construction were preserved in their original form, and a large grassy plaza was created to leave traces of Yukjo Street.

A large media façade is also installed and lit up every night.

As much as it claims to be a 'park-like square', the Seoul Metropolitan Government is not going to allow the de facto demonstrations that were held in the form of a 'cultural festival' in the past.

It is said that the local government restricts gatherings in open spaces that can be used freely by anyone, but it seems that the controversy will continue as it is pointed out that it violates the constitutional freedom of assembly and demonstration.

(Video coverage: Oh Young-chun, Video editing: Lee Seung-yeol)