The station in the car age

“The night train departing from Ueno …” exists no more, but the façade as a gateway to the north of Tokyo is still well retained. In the basement, the subway Ginza line and the Hibiya line were connected, and the Ueno store, which was once created, was also connected by an underground passageway.

The exterior of the station is relatively classic. The facade has beveled pillars with entasis. Rather, the highlights on the design are inside, with a large center space and Genichiro Inokuma’s mural painting (1951) & Ikuo Hirayama’s stained glass (1985) inviting a travel to the north of Japan.

Functionally, it is interesting to know how to handle the flow of cars and people. The flow of the automobile coming from Showa Dori Street is processed in three dimensions by the upper and lower of the front of the station. It is in contrast to Tokyo station, which distinguishes the entrance and exit at the north – south gateway at both ends of the horizontally long station.

However, at the current Ueno station, the pedestrian deck hides the façade, and the car can not access directly the ground entrance and the underground basement. The vibrant “blood” circulates around the “capillary” of the side Ameyoko, rather than the thick “blood vessel” in front of the station. (D.Kitagawa)


Type Station
Location Taito-ku Tokyo
Structural form Reinforced concrete building 4 floors above ground 4 stories (JR)
Scale area 125 365 m² (JR)
Completion year Renovation in 1931 (JR) 1927 (Tokyo Metro Co. Ltd.)
Manager JR East (Tokyo Metro Co. Ltd. for subway stations)
Designer Ministry of Railways (Tokyo Metro Co. Ltd. for subway station)
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