Tokyo Metro Ginza Line Renewal Competition

January 2013

Client: Tokyo Metro
Atelier mfmaarch

Mission: Concept Design for the platform, entrance/exit and the concourse
Status: Idea competition
Year: 2013
Location: Tokyo, Japan



All of three metro stations in the proposition are of the subways which are themselves one of the Japan's oldest industrial heritage and located in the downtown area holding many historic buildings on the ground of the same area.


Furthermore, they are characterized by the common images such as the civil steel structure, beams, brackets, archs, lattice structures and the red bricks etc.


On the other hand, the underground space structure exhibits various constraints in the renewal such as the cost increases associated with the space expansion, low ceiling height and the exposed mechanical elements.


Furthermore, in recent years, it is asked to contribute to the barrier-free plan, the improvement of the safety, the convenience and the comfort for various users in all subway stations, as the population is aging and the universal design is mandatory.


Therefore, the design proposition is made in consideration of the above common design, the constraints, the common-unity elements such as the Ginza line color in all metro stations as well as the differentiation measured, station by station,through the uniqueness and individuality of their locations.


The sign planning is made through both architectural technique and the mechanical one.


It intends not to cause problems with the wiring expansion, the cost increase of the wiring and the impairing of the aesthetics due to the sole focus on the distribution of the sign equipment.


On the other hand, the barrier-free gadgets such as the scheme guide plate touching voice, the braille display, call intercom for station attendants, Automated External Defibrillator (AED), call intercom for station clerks in charge, audio and voice guidance are to be placed in the entrance gate near vending machines, on all handrails and on the ground entrance.


In addition, in the whole design, the reduction of operating costs and initial investment is achieved through environmentally friendly materials, technically feasible design in terms of the cost,the maintenance and the renewal.


All this is expected to contribute to realistic business plan.

Easy to manage and the maintenance.


The ceiling material itself of two heavy metal ceiling of the proposed method channels the water leaked from the ceiling frames and the building frame in the subway to the drainage pipe through water canals.


Also, it prevents the water leakage from the hatch of the lighting fixtures and the air-conditioning equipment and the inspection port.



The measures about the discharge water are taken by setting up water canal in the form of the corner bracket(lintel) on the long side of the platform, which channells the water from the ceiling frame.


Also, a long lasting LED lighting is placed in a double ceiling with the inspection port for the maintenance.


The electronic bulletin board and sign in every day progress are installed in considration of the location which allows the maintenance and the replacement retrofit and thereby, the wiring is secured duly in its place.


The maintenance of the air conditioning in a recessed ceiling is made at the ceiling inspection hatch.


However, when the air-conditioning room is placed along the platform, the aesthetics of the interior of the platform is achieved through the planning of the easy maintenance and renewal not in the platform side but in the machine room side whose brick wall pre-installs the suction-exhaust opening hatch.


The pipes are intended to be concealed by using the pit under the floor and the top of the underground structure space.


However, if mechanical equipment is obliged to be in an exposure, it is required to consider the aesthetics of the interior and exterior of the ticket gate at the time of expansion and the replacement of the mechanical equipment through the covering above, the orientation and the position.  

Tokyo Metro Ginza Line, Ueno st.


Ueno Station is the largest entrance terminal station of all of three, leading to cultural and artistic area with the history which holds many museums, parks and the educational facilities.

In addition, it serves for a large number of people on every day commuting to school and work as the central terminal of the sub-center of Tokyo.


The entrance gate, the face of the metro station is designed with various characteristics such as the information guide corner with the windows for handicapped people, the architectural signs by the tile walls color-coded as per different destination,the irradiated diffusion on the ceiling coated with diffusive spreading paints through LED lighting which is installed in the upper parts of cylindrical columns and the digital signage installed in rectangular columns with a waist wall.


There is a retaining space like a squaire court in front of the stairs at the exit of the main platform of which the shape is gently curved.


The platform design configures the architectural sign, the barrier-free plan and the installation plan of the homedoor in consideration of the contrast to the new plan layout, the fully brick-clad wall as the design basis, the colour contrast with visibility and the material properties of the respective member elements.

A bright and wide space which is well-controlled with the accents is planned.

Tokyo Metro Ginza Line Inamoricho St.


The design of the platform is well-controlled with the lattice or grid of civil engineering structures and the directional linearity as the design basis in order to improve the safety and convenience of the user, as the white tone, though bright, can not distinguish boundaries amongst the constituent parts of a space.


Also, in order to avoid the monotony in its brick clad parts, each station is differentiated from other one through a change in the colour, the material placement and the material texture.


The new station attendant window is placed in the platform side in order to improve the safety and the convenience of the user at the ticket gate around.


Furthermore, the key areas like the ticket gate are identified readily even from the platform ends by the colour differentiation with the visibility in consideration of the lighting plan and the specification of the walls, the ceiling and the floor.

Tokyo Metro Ginza Line Kanda St.


The aboveground doorway is located near JR(Japan Railway) Kanda Station which is itself an historic building and at the gateway of regeneration area (work, living, entertainment) which is representative of a group of modern and historical buildings of Kanda area in front of the Kanda side entrance on JR elevated tracks.


Also, the above transport facilities form themselves a group of iconic and historical buildings.

However, their surrounding regions are places with multi-faceted, cross-purposeful, multi-aged, multi-generational, multi-national characteristics.


The side walls of the station platform with elongated triangle shapes configure the arch colonnade with archs on its top, the brackets and the structural steel columns in an equal span.


The design proposition is made through the space design with the contrast by making the colour coding and different materials in the wall of each direction as the architectural sign.


The convenience and safety of the user are achieved by placing the pillars made of laminated glass with sandwiched graphic sheets in consideration of the visibility, since there are both stairs leading to the ticket gates and ticket gates in each end of a long platform.


The characteristics of the light control glass used in the Metro station entrance are as follows.


The fusion of the cutting-edge design with the history and the tradition is measured in the sense that, the material and structural design / civil engineering structures of modern architecture such as the steel arch work, structural frame and the brackets are arranged with the contemporary interpretations.


The light control glass is not only excellent itself on the durability, but also facilitates to make renewal and maintenance because of a sequence of ready-made composed glass without the special machining cutting.


On dependence of the condition of the incident solar radiation, the light control glass becomes cloudy from transparent or viseversa and performs sunlight shielding / acquisition and the adjustment of the thermal environment in a single glass.


The light control glass solves the conventional problems associated with the frosted glass and shading

louvres such as the loss of transparency and too much stress to the user and so makes it possible to control smart environment in a single glass.


The light control glass under the environmental control has the image of the dynamic natural beauty.


The bent tube(the bent round pipe ) is maintenance free with a self-cleaning coating with the photocatalyst.


The ceiling windows reduce the lighting used on the ground doorway in the day.

Also, the power consumption for night lighting is reduced by the long lasting LED lighting.

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