An evacuation order for one of the towns hosting the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has been partially lifted from Wednesday.
Officials decided to lift the restrictions for two districts that cover 40 percent of Okuma because radiation levels have fallen significantly. The districts are about seven kilometers south-west of the damaged nuclear plant.
Residents are no longer required to register to stay overnight in their own homes.
Officials say they hope the town's revival will begin with these two districts.
A new town hall will begin operations on May 7. Fifty households are expected to move into public housing in June.
As of March 31, 367 people, or about 3.5 percent of Okuma's population, were registered as residents of the two districts.
A survey of former residents in January last year found that only 12.5 percent wanted to return to the town.