January 6, 2014

Unique Building * Nakagin Capsule Tower (Tokyo, Japan)

The Nakagin Capsule Tower is a unique building. It was designed to allow for capsules to be inserted into a mega-structure ... each capsule served as a room within the structure.

Located in the Ginza area of Tokyo, the Nagakin Capsule Tower, was originally designed as a Capsule Hotel to provide economical housing for businessmen working late in central Tokyo during the week.

The 14-story high Tower has 140 capsules stacked at angles around a central core. Kurokawa developed the technology to install the capsule units into the concrete core with only 4 high-tension bolts, as well as making the units detachable and replaceable.

Residents in Japan’s most famous experiment in living and working in tiny pods are now plotting its demolition. Kurokawa's design theory was to replace the capsules when needed but the building has not been maintained in 33 years which has caused drainage and water pipes to be damaged.

The international heritage protection group Docomomo, have unsuccessfully pleaded for the United Nations' heritage arm to protect this landmark building.

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