Minato Mirai 21 is a 1.2-mile urban redevelopment off the coast of Yokohama, Japan’s second-largest city after Tokyo. Minato Mirai 21 literally translates to “the futuristic port city of the 21st century.”
It is located southeast of Yokohama Station. The eastern side of the area faces the port of Yokohama. It has an area of 186 hectares.
Originally, there was a shipyard and a rail freight terminal there. The redevelopment began in 1983. Since 1989, office buildings, high-rise condominiums, hotels, shopping complexes, entertainment facilities, and various other services have been completed one after another.
Minato Mirai 21 has a complex circulation system that organizes pedestrians, spaces, roads, highways and railway lines, at different levels: underground structures of several routes and aerial crossings. Existing rail lines connect to new subway lines, such as the Minato Mirai line that runs through the Central District.
Vehicles travel east to west on two main arterial roads and cross the city on smaller roads that have wider sidewalks to accommodate pedestrians and bicycles. Existing railway stations are located along the old coastal area that stretches from modern Yokohama Station to the historic Kannai district. There are also two municipal bus systems, as well as tourist transport that drops visitors off at places of interest. MM21 is also accessible from the bay with water bus services.
The common entrance is JR Sakuragicho Station located to the south of the area, as most of the visitor spots are on that side. In the center of the area, there is a Minato Mirai station on the Yokohama Minato Mirai railway line. The train leads to Shibuya or Motomachi-Chukagai (Chinatown).
Landmark Tower: It is the tallest building in Japan. It was inaugurated in 1993. The height is 296 meters and it has 70 floors above the ground, with many offices, a hotel, restaurants and some clinics. In 69, the “Sky Garden” observatory room is located, at a level of 273 meters. It is the highest observation room in Japan. Furthermore, the elevators are also the fastest in Japan. (Up to 750 meters per minute). On the north side of the tower, there is a large shopping center “Landmark Plaza”.
Shipyard garden: It is the area where many ships were built from 1896 to 1973. Now it is used as an open terrace or an event venue for the Landmark Tower. Around it there are several restaurants. It is like a deep pit. The surrounding slopes are made of stones like the auditorium of the Roman theater. It has been designated one of the historic structures in Yokohama City.
Nippon-maru Memorial Park: It is located south of the Landmark Tower. There is a large sailing ship “Nippon-maru” and a “Yokohama Maritime Museum” that presents the history of the port of Yokohama and various ships. Nippon-maru was completed in 1930 as a sailing training ship, and was retired in 1984. Since 1985 it has been exhibited there.
Since the mid-19th century, Yokohama has remained Japan’s main commercial port and industrial base, the country’s “gateway to the world.” Minato Mirai 21 is at the core of Yokohama’s ‘Comprehensive Plan for the 21st Century’, an initiative of the municipality, in 1981, to revitalize the Yokohama port area, establish the independence of the city of Tokyo and decentralize the commercial functions of the center from Tokyo. This vibrant development continues to evolve and progress, showcasing “elements of smart growth, public / private partnerships, an extensive transportation network, mixed-use scheduling, and 24-hour hubs” that attract new businesses, residents and more than 50 million people. visitors every year.