Tama — The Cozy Banlieu Of Tokyo

Tama New Town is a suwa dachi (housing estate) in the suburbs of Tokyo. It was designed and created in the 60ies, as a modern and pleasant living space for the exploding population, with huge apartment complexes, shopping areas, green spaces and state-run cultural venues.

I needed footage of empty spaces with a hint of abandonedness. Tama seemed like a splendid setting.

Tama is like Marzahn and Märkisches Viertel in Berlin, the banlieus of Paris or the endless social democratic satellite towns of Scandinavia. Or all of Soviet Union.

I am a sucker for spaces that once upon a time was the future. But, now, moss is growing in the cracks and crack is growing in the water supply. When they make Indiana Jones XXVII in 2197, these will be the exotic ruins where relics are sought.

Tama New Town crawls the green valleys and lazy hills at the foot of the mountains west of Tokyo.

Concrete is so beautiful when she sleeps.

There are cozy details like post-apocalyptic flooring, drawn curtains, no humans.

As any city planner with respect for themselves making architecture for dystopian 80ies sci-fi, the area has a mono-rail commuter train that looks like it comes straight out of a BASF cassette factory.

Notice the perfectly matching blue logo on the skyscraper.

The monorail has panoramic windows, impeccably dressed and gloved drivers and hand-written poetry-sheets for station announcements.

The line crawls elegantly through the valley, above the green hills — and sneaks stealthily under the endless forests of pylons.

I have a crush on the pylons of Tokyo. They are so much more here, here.

The edgelands inbetween housing projects is well kept wild weeds.

The condo buildings are splendidly homogenous.

Green lungs exquisite in their weedy, but well kept, abandonement.

I prefer textures with experience.

The area has a townlike city-square with all the expected brands and cheery arcitecture that invites honest citizens to colourful consumerist happiness.

I don’t know what this is. But I’m sure it’s a trap.