Mitsui announces plans for US$10-billion ‘Greater Nihonbashi’ redevelopment

On August 29, Mitsui Fudosan announced major redevelopment plans for a district alongside Nihonbashi river in downtown Tokyo. The project is expected to be completed somewhere between 2030 and 2040 and costs could run as high as 1 trillion Yen (approx. US$10 billion).

The goal is to create a waterfront district reminiscent of the old Edo days when the city relied on its various waterways and canals to transports goods to merchants. Many of these canals have since been built over with roads and unsightly expressways. 

The centerpiece of the redevelopment will be burying the Metropolitan Expressway that runs atop the Nihonbashi river. The expressway was built in 1963. Discussions to relocate it underground have been ongoing since 2005. 

Mitsui is planning 1.22 million square meters (approx. 13 million square feet) of office and retail space alongside this stretch of the river in coming years. The floor area will be twice the size of Roppongi Midtown, and 40% larger than Mori’s planned Toranomon-Azabudai District Redevelopment. 

Mitsui has been actively redeveloping the Nihonbashi district since the late 1990s, and with good reason. Nihonbashi was old Tokyo’s major merchant hub and continues to be one of the capital’s top financial districts. 

The Sankei Shimbun, August 29, 2019.
The Daily Engineering & Construction News, August 30, 2019.

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