Former Emperor Akihito, who abdicated last year, and his wife, former Empress Michiko, will move from the Imperial Palace in Tokyo’s Chiyoda Ward to a temporary residence in Minato Ward this month, the Imperial Household Agency said Friday.

The Imperial Palace will then undergo renovation work to house Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako, as well as their daughter, Princess Aiko. The family currently lives in the Akasaka Imperial Residence in Minato Ward.

The former emperor and empress, now known as emperor emeritus and empress emerita, will move to the Takanawa Imperial Residence on March 31 after staying at the Hayama Imperial Villa in Kanagawa Prefecture and the Imperial Stock Farm in Tochigi Prefecture from March 19.

The retired couple is expected to live in the Takanawa residence for up to a year and a half. They will then move to the Akasaka residence, where barrier-free facilities will be installed for the couple.

The Takanawa residence was built in 1973 as the home of the late Prince Takamatsu, uncle of Emperor Emeritus Akihito. Renovation work was carried out there from June 2018 to March 2019.

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