Following up on yesterday’s main post, here’s Marunouchi’s famous Nakadori, or as we call it “Tokyo’s Wall Street”. This street is not only the home of most major Japanese financial companies it is a place of very expensive shopping and some great restaurant. Even if you’ve left your credit card at home it’s a great place to stroll down at any time of the day, and especially now that the Christmas lights are out. When I first came to Japan this street was a huge construction site but gradually the low buildings mandated by law due to the proximity to the Imperial palace have given way to super sky scrapers, the latest of which is due to finish in April 2012, the tentatively named JP Tower, a 200m tall glass and steel building replacing the old Tokyo GPO (1933-2008). Can’t wait to see that one finished!
Nakadori is closed to traffic during the lunch break and the area corporation takes the environmental studies very seriously. I’ve seen entomologists (insect specialists), zoologists, chemists and hydrologists keep a very close eye on every aspect of animal and human life along the street. There’s mobile environmental units every 100m along the street recording all sorts of data in an effort to make the area as clean as possible. Quite remarkable. Even though it is in the middle of the biggest city in the world the air is exceptionally clean.
The last two photos are of the Shinmarunouchi Building and the Marunouchi Building, two giant office/shopping buildings that stands on the shoulders of the road leading from Tokyo Station to the Imperial palace. A must visit if you go to Tokyo! But you might want to dress up a little. It’s a snazzy place and I feel vaguely out of place without a jacket and tie, even in the summer.
It’s Christmas Eve. Here’s some nicely non-Christmasy Christmas decorations for you, part of this years huge marketing effort from the Marunouchi area commercial groups. Tokyo is not on a very northernly latitude but still it does get dark very early in the winter so the lights help cheer us. The decoration in Marunouchi is much more luxurious than most areas though, as befits “Japan’s Wall Street”.