Tokyo's cells for living, working, eating, entertainment and sex | One Minute Architecture | Dezeen

In his latest contribution to Virtual Design Festival, video blogger Martin van der Linden uses some of his favourite architecture books to explain the order behind Tokyo’s apparently chaotic urban landscape.

“When first-time visitors come to Tokyo, they are often overwhelmed by its chaotic urbanity,” he says. “Buildings jumbled together with no sense of coordination between them.”

To illustrate, van der Linden refers to the Kyoichi Tsuzuki book Tokyo Style, which features photographs of the city’s cramped and messy 1K apartments.

“In Japan, apartments are classified according to the number of rooms that they have,” he explains. “So you have the 1K, meaning one room with a kitchen and the 3LDK, living room, dining room, kitchen with three bedrooms.”

Because of the high density of small living spaces, van der Linden says that the city has developed into a series of cells for everyday life activities.

“Life in Tokyo is dispersed from cell to cell,” he says. “Where the Tokyoite lives, where they work, where they eat, where to entertain themselves, even where they have sex,” he says. “These 1K rooms, and other activity-based cells are what forms the urban collective or what Tokyo essentially is.”

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