World famous Tokyo’s intersection will be disappeared? Check out Shibiuya, a shopping spot that will be reborn.
Shibuya, where everyone knows as the place of young people gather and never miss any trendy fashion. it is also considered as a source of fashion. What comes to your mind when you hear Shibuya? In my case, it is the intersection. Many people probably think about the same. The scramble intersection where countless people cross from all directions when the signal turns to green. Although this place is just a regular intersection and not originally a sightseeing spot, it is very popular among foreign tourists traveling to Japan. About 500,000 strangers pass by every day, and 2,000 people cross the intersection each time when the traffic light changes. Moreover, strangers dodge through without bumping each other. There are no such intersections like this exist in any other countries. As a proof of that, it is used as a location for many dramas, PV, and movies. Visitors from inside and outside of countries who travel in Japan constantly visit here because they probably want to experience this crazy intersection.
A perfect cafe for watching the scramble intersection
Have a short break between shopping. Why don’t you relax and look outside from the window to see the crowd coming and going? There are various coffee shops where you can overlook the scramble intersection. For example, “Starbucks” in Shibuya Station Square, “L'OCCITANE Café,” which is also popular in Greater China, and “Hoshino Coffee Shop” in “109 MEN'S. building.
Today I watched the intersection from the café in retro atmosphere with a Woodie interior and black and white uniform while enjoying the scent of coffee.
The city of Shibuya is in big confusion under huge construction at the moment.
Shibuya is in a middle of redevelopment now. A large-scale “once in a life time” redevelopment plan has been announced several years ago, and it is still underway, mainly at Shibuya Station. Construction progresses every second. I was surprised by the stories that people get lost because routes from Shibuya station to workplaces change many times a week or a pedestrian bridge that used daily is suddenly disconnected. I think that it is very much “Japanese” to do construction little by little every day without blocking the whole road where so many people pass through.
How do we cross the road after removing this pedestrian bridge? Although it hasn’t started yet, “crossing deck” is planned to build utilizing the viaduct which had been used for the platform of Shibuya Station before. It is a topic that the former Shibuya station platforms which were built for the last 1964 Tokyo Olympics is revived again. I hear that the movement of the pedestrian from Shibuya Station to the Daikanyama direction becomes very convenient by this deck. Everyone should follow this spirit to try to create new value by using old things.
Under this redevelopment project, various projects are in progress at the same time, and there are some places already completed. For example, Shibuya Hikarie, opened in 2012, has about 200 stores and facilities such as theaters, department stores and restaurants, and it has already established the popularity.
Also, “Shibuya Cast,” located at the entrance of the Cat Street connecting Shibuya and Harajuku opened in 2017. It has the elements as a base station for creators as equipped multipurpose spaces where events can be held, cafés, exhibition spaces, and shared offices, as well as shopping areas. Furthermore, “Shibuya Stream,” “Shibuya Scramble Square,” and “Shibuya Parco” will continue to open in the near future.
Speaking of Shibuya, many people have the image of a shopping town because there are “109,” “Tokyu Department Store,” and “Seibu Department Store.” After the redevelopment, this image might even increase.
For example, “Shibuya PARCO.” It used to be lead fashion trend of Shibuya, but it stopped operating in 2016 due to rebuilding. That “PARCO” is scheduled to be opened in the fall of 2019 as new “Shibuya PARCO.”
In addition, commercial facilities are also included in forementioned "Shibuya Stream,” which is scheduled to be opened in 2018, and “Shibuya Scramble Square (photo left),” which is scheduled to be opened in 2019. The redevelopment around Shibuya Station is supposed to be completed in 2027, but various shopping spots are already scheduled to be opened in 2020 by the Tokyo Olympic Games. It seems that shopping in Shibuya will become fun more and more.
The point that worries about development is always the same. Shibuya's attractiveness will be lost? Will the scramble intersection that is unique to Shibuya is disappeared with this redevelopment?
Don't worry. The scramble intersection will not be gone. Even if the redevelopment is completed in 2027, the scramble intersection remains there. It seems that you can also have a rooftop observation deck at "Scramble Square." You can see not only Shibuya from the rooftop, but also Mt. Fuji if the weather is clear. You will be able to overlook the scramble intersection, of course.
Shibuya has full of lively atmosphere and creative mood as well as shopping spots. Moreover, it continues to evolve further along with redevelopment.
If you visit Shibuya, it is highly recommended to see the intersection from a coffee shop, as well as enjoy shopping. If it is after spring 2019, watching it from the rooftop of the newly opened "Scramble Square" is good too. It will be spectacular. Through this redevelopment, Shibuya becomes even more fun as a shopping spot with the scramble intersection, the symbol of Shibuya. Why not check with your eyes what would happen to Shibuya in 2020, the milestone of the redevelopment?
*The above information was last updated February 9, 2018.
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