The Nakagin Capsule Tower is a unique structure located in Shimbashi in Tokyo, Japan. It is a mixed use residential and office tower distinguishable by its unique design of dice-like cubes stacked one upon the other. It is a rare example of the Japanese Metabolism movement that surged after the World War II in Japan. It is also the world’s first example of capsule architecture.
Nakagin Capsule Tower History
The Nakagin Capsule Tower was the brainchild of Japanese architect Kisho Kurokawa, one of the founders of the Japanese Metabolism movement. The Capsule Tower was constructed in 1970 and was completed two years later. It was the first of its kind to be built and is still being used until now. Through the years it has been a target for demolition being initiated by the building’s residents, citing neglect and deteriorating living conditions.
Nakagin Capsule Tower Features
The Nakagin Capsule Tower is a classic and rare example of capsule architecture that symbolized the Japanese Metabolism movement. This movement aimed to design buildings that are flexible where ideas of metabolism, exchangeability and recycleability were the primary goals. This is better presented by the Nakagin Capsule Tower which is composed of separate capsules for rooms that can be stacked one upon the other.
The Nakagin Capsule Tower is primarily composed of two interconnected concrete towers, one standing eleven stories and the other thirteen stories high. The towers serve as a central core where 140 capsules stacked one atop another at different angles. Each prefabricated capsule measures 2.3 meters x 3.8 meters x 2.1 meters. Each one is a self-contained unit that can function as an office or living space. Each capsule is designed to be replaceable and detachable although none of the original capsules have been replaced since its construction.