Finding your place at Yokohama station
JR Yokohama Tower is part of a reconstruction project and the landmark structure for the west exit area of Yokohama Station. It is also a lead project of "Excite Yokohama 22", the development project for the Yokohama Station area sanctioned by the city of Yokohama. With a total floor area of approximately 100,000 square meters, and a height of approximately 132 meters, it was designed as a complex facility consisting of commercial facilities, offices, and a movie theater.
In 2014, we were selected through a nomination competition and were in charge of the environmental design of the exterior corridors, atrium, and rooftop garden. Yokohama Station is an "accessible" place for many people, for it is a huge station with multiple train lines coming in. However, while people enjoy the convenience of the station, not many would have considered Yokohama Station to be part of their habitat. In designing this project, we wanted people to revisit their relationship with the station, we wanted people to become attached and find their own place where they could belong at Yokohama Station.
The "Umi-Sora Deck" (sea-sky) on the 12th floor of the JR Yokohama Tower is located where the tower's commercial section connects to the office section and was planned as a public space to cater for both. On weekdays, people who work here can have lunch, hold meetings, or just work in the open space just as an extension to their own offices. On days off, people visiting the station can enjoy the view and take a break. The location was designed to be a place where mothers with children can rest and relax, a place to be enjoyed both for business and recreation.
The “Atrium”, which serves as the entrance to the tower and the main access to JR Yokohama Station gates, is a four-story 55 meter high atrium, with a distinct feature inspired by a ship’s bottom made of natural cedar wood. The Atrium was designed to evolve around the concept of a "live station," where various "events" take place in locations such as the live stage, exhibition space, and lounging area. In order to show that these series of "events" over time are what made Yokohama what it is today, and to show how we could build a future, we have placed shelves and furniture along the walls of each floor to store and showcase the memories of Yokohama with a concept of creating the “Yokohama Archive”.
We believe that the accumulation of memory pieces of Yokohama in the atrium space at the center of Yokohama Station, will lead to the station becoming a place for many people to learn about their own city. In extension to this idea, there is also a tourist information center in the atrium, where we were involved in the overall design, including the interior, the exhibits display, and the staff uniform, and we believe that we were able to convey the concept more clearly.