Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Tokyo Sky Tree

One of the perennial stops on Tokyo tours is the omnipresent TV tower. Its bright red superstructure can be seen from many different city locations, despite the increasing proliferation of downtown skyscrapers. However, it - and likely many of it's ilk - are reaching the end of their useful lives. The switch from analogue to digital broadcasting will mean that existing towers like this are no longer able to cover enough subscribers to be that useful any more, especially in this age of satellite and cable content delivery.

However, it appears that Tokyo is still planning to stick with the tower option, only this time bigger. Much bigger. Therefore, please welcome the (still under construction) Tokyo Sky Tree. The design rendered in the Wikipedia article looks like one of those fancy pens that catches your eye in airport departure areas while waiting to escape to somewhere else. You know the sort, the one with the stainless-steel mesh covering and a price tag that looks like it is being quoted in yen even when in reality it's actually dollars.

I like it. Tokyo long since gave up trying to achieve the impossible and stop the march of progress in a city that's largely been completely replaced at least twice in the 20th century, and this just moves the architectural landscape forwards once again.

Here's to the Sky Tree. Long may it bloom.

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