Okamoto

Almost the entire area between the two stations is a pedestrian-priority shopping zone.  It is somewhat of a “University Village”, with many cafes and shops catering to students of several nearby colleges. Continue reading Okamoto

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Street Hierarchy: Kitano

The Kitano-ijinkan area is a unique historic neighborhood located in the foothills near Sannomiya Station.  This post covers a neighborhood including parts of Kitano-cho (北野町), Yamamoto-Dori (山本通), and Naka-Yamate-Dori (中山手通). The streets above are highlighted hierarchically as follows: – Magenta:     A pedestrian plaza and shopping street, with high density of tourists. – Cyan:            Single Lane One Way (minimal road width, … Continue reading Street Hierarchy: Kitano

Walking in Kamakura

The walkability of central Kamakura is defined by three north-south spines: The Komachi-Dori Shotengai (nighttime walk-through video) Car-free Hokoten every day from 4 pm to 7 pm (Sundays and holidays 10 am to 4 pm). Stretches 590 meters (1,940 feet) north from Kamakura Station (JR East and Enoshima/Enoden lines) to Hachimangu Shrine. The Onari-Dori Shotengai (daytime walk-through video) Car-free Hokoten every day from 4 pm … Continue reading Walking in Kamakura

The Shibuya You Don’t Know

Stock photos and televised clips of Shibuya usually depict only the iconic scramble intersection, but there is a lot more to this central Tokyo neighborhood. In fact, in Shibuya’s liveliest commercial districts, you never have to wait to cross the street (these are the “Nightlife Alleys” described in The Hierarchy of Japanese Streets). The following screenshots from Walking in Shibuya at night by Rambalac reveal a true pedestrian … Continue reading The Shibuya You Don’t Know

Island of Walkability: Onomichi (尾道)

Most of the commercial life of Onomichi is concentrated in a compact strip about 6,400 feet long, varying from ~200 to ~1,000 feet in width.   The fully roofed (アーケード) portion of Onomichi’s central shopping street (商店街) is about 3,000 feet long. This commercial core is separated from the waterfront by two lanes of traffic (one lane in each direction) with a relatively high speed limit (40 … Continue reading Island of Walkability: Onomichi (尾道)

What I learned from #StreetOfTheDay

A Tribute to the photo collections of N. Lewis and D. Boxall My bad habit is looking at pictures of beautiful streets.  I can stare at them for hours in a state of total wonderment.  Because they feel comfortable, safe, welcoming, alive… and nobody seems to know why. But recently, I began to notice a pattern; the best streets all fit the same basic form with regard … Continue reading What I learned from #StreetOfTheDay

Directions to IHJ (International House of Japan)

I have two recommendations for walking to the International House of Japan (IHJ): A 10 minute scenic tour. A 10 minute mole tour (if you want to minimize your time outdoors). The scenic option offers a complete crash course in walkable urbanism, hidden in the most mundane details. As I have written elsewhere, most of our knowledge about how to build a walkable city has yet … Continue reading Directions to IHJ (International House of Japan)