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Seoul's Seocho office eyes 'Korean wave districts'

A Seoul district government said Tuesday it will push to create special zones for K-pop and classical music in a bid to further promote the "Korean wave," or the global popularity of Korean pop culture.

Under the envisioned project by the Seocho-gu District Office, the so-called K-pop district will be established surrounding the Riverside Hotel in Jamwon-dong, where a concert hall reserved for K-pop performances will be built.

The special zone is expected to be the venue for diverse festivals and exhibitions on Korean pop culture, such as flea markets, auditions for amateur artists and street performances, according to the office.

As the K-pop zone is to be located near Garosu-gil -- a trendy tree-lined street of galleries, restaurants, cafes and clothing boutiques -- tourists both from home and abroad will be able to enjoy diverse attractions at the same time, the office added. 

"We will transform the special zone into one of hottest places in the country for K-pop fans, and those who want to learn and enjoy the dynamic culture," said an official at the district office.

Along with the K-pop zone, the district office also plans to designate the so-called K-classic zone surrounding the Seoul Arts Center, the country's major art and culture complex, where more than 100 major musical institutions and musical instruments shops are located.

The government plans to spend 13.2 billion won ($12.3 million) by 2019 to build museums for classical musical instruments and the country's traditional ones, and to launch diverse projects such as holding street performances and forming an orchestra for underprivileged people.

"I hope the designation of the Korean wave cultural zone serves as a chance to further boost Korean culture globally," district chief Jin Ik-cheol said. (Yonhap)