This article showed up on my facebook feed the other day.
The problem with those big developments is that they don’t seem to have much character. There’s something about the rows of closed doors in hallways that discourages intercommunication and neighborliness. Yes the big buildings have great views and are efficient but there’s not much character there. Walking in some of those Tokyo neighborhoods and they just ooze the kind character that gives life to a big city. Quite frankly, if you are hoping to encourage travelers to come, character and atmosphere are exactly what you want.
Here’s some big developments in Shinagawa:
On the Shimada River:
One thing those massive developments never seem to develop is true character.
They never seem to have life in the streets like this.
There’s something to be said about the places just hanging on, but providing a living for people.
A great city needs to remember where it came from and remember, no matter how great the developers claims that their plans don’t always work out. I’ve seen far too many cases where those big buildings just seem to be out of scale and out of touch with the communities that they are dropped into.
Context is important in development. And a city needs diversity. Anyway here’s an album of Tokyo neighborhoods with all sorts of buildings, large and small.