JR Central Towers
Nagoya Marriott Associa HotelNagoya, Japan JR Tokai Taisei, Architect-of-Record; Mr. Seizo Sakata, Master Architect; Sakakura, Interior Designer; Bent Severin, Interior Designer Corporate, Mixed-Use, Retail, Transportation + Infrastructure, Hospitality 4.8 million ft2 / 417,000 m2
Japan Rail’s Nagoya Station is a multimodal transit hub that houses two national railway lines, and the Tokaido Shinkansen, the high-speed bullet train to Kyoto, Osaka and Tokyo. JR Central Station also houses two private railway lines, four subway lines (including a direct link to Nagoya’s new International Airport), and both JR buses and Nagoya’s city bus lines. The station remained in operation throughout the construction process of JR Central Towers that began in 1989 and was completed in 2000.
Two cylindrical towers, housing JR offices and the Nagoya Marriott Associa Hotel rise over 50 stories above a twenty-story podium that houses the JR Central Station concourse, 11 floors of the Takashimaya Department Store and two floors of gourmet restaurant outlets, all capped by a glass-enclosed public “sky-street” connecting the office tower to the hotel tower. A two-story sky-street on the fifteenth floor—reached from the ground level through a bank of exterior shuttle elevators—connects public functions below to the towers above as it affords sweeping views of the city.
JR Central Towers create a dramatic profile that redefined the Nagoya skyline. The 55-story JR Towers office building totals more than 1.1 million square feet of space. The 59-story, 774-room Nagoya Marriott Associa Hotel is operated by JR Associa Hotels in conjunction with Marriott Corporation. The Nagoya Marriott Associa Hotel is regarded as one of the 6 best hotels in Japan. Amenities include 10 restaurants and 50,000 square feet of meeting and function rooms in a state-of-the-art convention center.
The contrast between the towers and their shared base also reflects the desire to integrate the building into the urban context. Evoking parallel stretches of railway, the horizontal articulation of the podium provides a link to the low, surrounding structures. The uninterrupted vertical expression of the towers combined with the siting of the complex forms a monumental gateway into the city.