World’s Tallest Timber Tower Proposed for Tokyo

Known as “plyscrapers,” several towers of wood are planned for development around the world. None impresses quite as much as Sumitomo Forestry’s 1,148-foot-tall and $5.6 billion project: the W350 tower. It’s slated to be the tallest wooden building in the world, and its construction will honor the company’s 350-year anniversary. Completion of the 70-story tower is expected in 2041. Green balconies will define the exterior, …

Two Affordable, Design-Friendly Moxy Hotels Open in Japan

Tokyo and Osaka welcome the rapidly expanding Marriott brand

You wake at 3AM. You don’t want to go back to sleep. You’re in Japan—now is not the time to stay in bed. You rise, dress and head to the elevator. It’s glass and offers a view of Osaka. You feel a bit of the outdoor weather, affirming your decision to be awake. You find yourself in the lobby and there, in your hotel, is …

Link About It: This Week’s Picks

Digital greenhouses, mega-cities, space rocks, hidden chambers inside pyramids and more in our look around the web

1. Secret Chamber Discovered in Egypt’s Great Pyramid Using muon detectors, researchers have discovered a previously hidden space inside Egypt’s Great Pyramid. Egyptologists have said that the chamber won’t contain hidden treasure or anything of that kind, but it will potentially help reveal how the 4,500-year-old pyramid was constructed. The purpose of the hidden space is unknown for now, but researchers believe it might have …

Digital Greenhouse’s “Vegetable Symphony”

A touch-activated digital greenhouse in Tokyo is more than visually stunning because of its psychedelic lights. This magical place is home to a “vegetable orchestra,” by studio PARTY. The garden contains seven types of vegetables, each of which, when touched by visitors, trigger different sounds and visuals. Sound artist Ray Kunimoto says, “Tomatoes are violin, carrots are trumpet, cabbages are oboe, mini radishes are flute, …

The Future of Car Design at the Tokyo Motor Show

Japanese brands take up intrinsic, rather than Western influences

by Michael Frank Last week in Japan the press got a preview of the Tokyo Motor Show—which officially opened to the public on the weekend. Most attendees will see concepts from Japanese carmakers (it’s largely a domestically focused show by Japanese carmakers for Japanese buyers), we saw a shake-up of sorts. Designers spoke repeatedly about looking back at intrinsically Japanese values in designing their cars. …