Japan Railway & Transport Review No. 56 (p22-p25)

Feature : Development of Stations and Surrounding Areas
Large Tokyu Development Projects around Shibuya, Futako-tamagawa and Tama-plaza Stations

Tokyu Corporation


Tokyu Corporation is a private railway company with 8 railway lines in the Greater Tokyo Area. Along with railways, the company also operates 400 usinesses, including real estate development, hotel management, and retail. This article introduces some of Tokyu’s development projects at their stations and surrounding areas.

Developments around Shibuya Station

Shibuya is a major railway terminal in Tokyo and an important centre for Tokyu Corporation as the home of the Tokyu Group. Through service between the Toyoko Line and the Tokyo Metro Fukutoshin Line is scheduled to start at Shibuya in 2012, making it an even more important hub. Tokyu Corporation has positioned the Shibuya Hikarie (hikari means light in Japanese) building under construction near the site of the former Tokyu Bunka Kaikan building as a leading development project in Shibuya, and is promoting the plan as a core stakeholder.
The building name is meant to express the idea of a light shining from Shibuya that changes the world. Shibuya Hikarie will be a 182.5-m skyscraper with a feeling of transparency expressed mainly by glass. It aims to be a platform for creating new value and projecting that value as a symbol of the ever-changing town of Shibuya. The lower levels will house a new Tokyu Department Store, the higher levels will house offices, and the middle levels will house three cultural facilities: the Tokyu Theater Orb, a 2000-seat theatre for performances centring on musicals; an exhibition hall that will be a new information hub for the town; and an academy for fostering creative human resources. The structure will make use of the surrounding sloped terrain, forming a pedestrian network that connects characteristic zones of Shibuya such as Shibuya Station, Meiji Dori, Miyamasu-zaka, and Aoyama, via five floors of the building. Furthermore, the aim is to enhance the convenience of Shibuya as a mobility hub and to revitalize the area by creating movement and bustle in the surrounding streets. This will be achieved by a vaulted structure from the third floor underground to the fourth floor above ground to enable easy movement between floors, and by providing direct access to the Tokyu Toyoko and Tokyo Metro Fukutoshin lines from the third floor underground. Advanced environmental functions will also be provided, such as exploiting the natural ventilation function of neighbouring Shibuya Station and planting about 30% of the floor area with vegetation.
The area around Shibuya Station was designated for urgent urban renewal in December 2005. Since then, considerations of urban infrastructure have been made in earnest by government agencies, railway operators, local parties, and others. On 22 June 2009, a decision was made on urban planning including renovation of the station plaza and a location change for the Tokyo Metro Ginza Line station, gradually bringing the overall vision of development for the area around the station into focus. After the current Toyoko Line station is relocated underground and through service starts, development is scheduled to start on the station block and block previously occupied by the Toyoko Line.

Photo: Shibuya Hikarie Computer Visualization (Tokyu Corporation)
Photo: Futako-tamagawa Rise (Tokyu Corporation)

Developments around Futako-tamagawa Station

One of the largest urban redevelopment projects in Tokyo is progressing near Futako-tamagawa Station on a 112,000 m2 block at the site of the former Futako-tamagawa amusement park east of Futako-tamagawa Station on the Den’entoshi and Oimachi lines. The project plan, which was finalized in June 2000, is divided into two phases. In the first phase of approximately 81,000 m2, the primary contractor is the Futako-tamagawa-Higashi District Redevelopment Association established in March 2005 and comprising landowners including Tokyu Corporation.
The aim is to achieve urban development where everyone can live in comfort, making use of the site’s inherent natural resources and geographical situation as a gateway to west Tokyo while further advancing the favourable living environment and established commercial hub. Specifically, the area will be revitalize by reinforcing commercial and business functions around the station while developing the water and green open spaces in harmony with the surrounding rich natural environment. At the same time, the project is developing roads and a railway hub.
The Futako-tamagawa Rise Tower & Residence apar tments were completed on 17 May 2010 with stakeholders and apartment leaseholders already moving in. The apartments have sold well because they are situated in front of Futako-tamagawa Station with an uncommon fusion of urban and natural environments.
March 2011 sees the opening of the Futako-tamagawa Rise Shopping Center where Tokyu will open a department store and supermarket occupying about 6000 m2 on the first underground floor. The above-ground floors will house about 150 specialty shops targeting young women in their 20s and 30s based on marketing ‘progress creating a city centre feel’.

Developments around Tama-plaza Station

A development centred on TamaPlaza Terrace, a hub on the Den’entoshi Line, has been proceeding since 2005 and was formally completed on 7 October 2010 with the grand opening of TamaPlaza Terrace Gate Plaza (stage 3).
TamaPlaza Terrace has 139 shops as well as a fitness club, culture school, square for concerts and events, and more, all based on the concept of a ‘lifestyle community centre’ providing local residents with a variety of lifestyle and community functions. TamaPlaza Terrace Gate Plaza (stage 3) attracted many shops providing services for children, meeting the needs of young families in their 20s and 30s, and offering an environment where it is easy to raise children. Moreover, communication spaces, such as squares, event spaces, and parks are dotted across the area, creating a comfortable town scenery.
The station has a large roof over the ticket gates, forming a three-story vaulted space. The design aim was to create a symbolic space befitting the gateway to the town and to create harmony with the open cityscape. In addition to the station, an elevated platform has been built over the tracks to secure a spacious facility where people can move easily back and forth between the north and south sides of the town centred on the station. An additional ticket gate has been built at the north exit and transport facilities, such as the bus plaza and parking lots, have been moved underground as far as possible to separate road traffic and pedestrians for better safety.
There are many environmental considerations. For example, the common areas of TamaPlaza Terrace are open, eliminating the need for air conditioning and ventilation equipment and reducing electricity consumption and CO2 emissions. Skylights in the station concourse allow natural light into the platform area and reduce the need for lighting during the day. An opening in the floor of the concourse promotes natural ventilation at the platform level and reduces temperature increases caused by waste heat from train air conditioning units.
This project is the culmination of the Tokyu Tama Garden City plan lead by Tokyu Corporation for more than 50 years. Even after its completion, Tokyu plans to continue attractive urban developments along the Den’entoshi Line to increase the amenity value of the area.

Photo: TamaPlaza Terrace Development Computer Visualization (Tokyu Corporation)

This article was contributed by Tokyu Corporation.