Had the creators of the underground skyscraper had their way, the Japanese capital might have looked very different indeed
Protected by cylindrical walls of reinforced concrete, the steel and glass “depthscrapers” extend hundreds of metres underground. Only a single floor of each inverted 35-storey skyscraper is visible at ground level.
Giant mirrors mounted directly above the central wells reflect sunlight to the apartments below. Prismatic glass ensures even light throughout the day, while fresh, conditioned air is pumped down from the surface.
Depthscrapers featured in the November 1931 edition of US magazine Everyday Science and Mechanics
Kenzo Tange’s 1960 masterplan for Tokyo. Images: Tange Architects
The Shimizu Mega-City Pyramid. Image: Shimizu Corporation
A model of the Norman Foster-designed Millennium Tower. Photograph: SSPL/Getty
The Sky Mile Tower was the centrepiece of Kohn Pedersen Fox’s Next Tokyo 2045 project. Images: KPF
Zaha Hadid’s design for the National Stadium for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Images: Japan Sport Council/EPA/AP/Zaha Hadid ArchitectsContinue reading...