Wood Under the Rails

Posted by Jim Ivanoff
February 9th, 2010

IMG_0578 IMG_0579   For about a year now the elevated train tracks near where I live have been receiving seismic upgrades. Before this work began there were many little shops under the tracks which is very common in Japan. They had to go of course due to this work, but there was a plan to replace the shops once the structural work had been completed.

On the weekend I was walking past the train station and I noticed that the curtains hiding the construction had come down and that the work had almost been completed. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the drab concrete looking commercial space that had been there has been replaced with a stylish new look encompassing wood. This is probably a reflection of the current drive in Japan to shift from concrete urban spaces to "eco" inspired wood ones. Let's see if we can get more WRC into such projects!

IMG_0580  On this same walk I also saw posters covered in Canadian flags in a bento (lunch box) shop's window. They were promoting the fact that their bentos use Canadian beef. This is quite a turnaround from a few years ago when Canadian beef was shunned here due to mad cow fears. Do you think that the Olympics have anything to do with this Canadian promotion? Hopefully we can also tap into such "Yeah Canada" feelings at the upcoming Nikkei Show.

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