Hello, I am the designer Asako Koyama. Presently, I am working on architecture-related work, so I love walking around and looking at architectural structures.

Yokohama is my hometown, and there are so many buildings in Yokohama that I recommend, but I especially want you to see “Osanbashi Yokohama.” Its formal name is “Osanbashi Yokohama International Passenger Terminal.”

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It’s mainly a terminal for passenger ships from around the world that are entering and leaving Japan. It has a long history – it has been constructed six times since its opening in 1859 with the arrival of Commodore Perry’s ships up until the construction of the present terminal. Its address is also 1-1 Kaigandori, Naka-ku, Yokohama-shi (number 1 of the first district of Kaigandori, Naka Ward, Yokohama City), undoubtedly making it Yokohama’s point of origin.

Before the current terminal was built, a large-scale international competition for designing the terminal was held in 1995. There were 660 applications from 41 countries, and from these, the design of two unknown British architects, Alejandro Zaera-Polo (then 31 yrs. old) and Farshid Moussavi (then 28 years old) was chosen. Their design was presented in full CG, which was unusual at the time.

I didn’t take a picture of the exterior, but it is characterized by undulating waves, and it was designed in a way that the floor, walls, and ceiling are all linked together. Its rooftop is covered with grass and surrounded by a wooden deck, while its floor and walls are gently curved. Moreover, the overall spaces (interior and exterior) are connected; and people are able to walk on natural flow lines despite varying heights. But when you walk on the terminal, optical illusions disrupt your sense of balance a little.

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As you can see, the architecture is amazing, but more than anything else, the view is the best. You have a panoramic view of a quintessential Yokohama landscape, and because there are no high-rise buildings around, the sea breezes are wonderful. Please do visit Osanbashi when you’re in Yokohama – it’s free.

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▼Back issues about Asako Koyama
We Asked the Designers of the 2017 D-BROS Calendar “JUMP” About Their Thoughts on the Production Process (Part 2)
We Asked the Designers of the 2017 D-BROS Calendar “JUMP” About Their Thoughts on the Production Process (Part 1)
Precisely Because It’s Something That I Use Every Day
The Life of a Designer, Vol. 2: Ms. Asako Koyama Tells us About Her Everyday Life

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