Yokocho Vertical Alley
Vertical Alley explores the intersection of public and private spheres in response to the rising density of emerging megacities. As personal space shrinks, a new lifestyle of urban nomadism arises in which a variety of businesses, along with the city itself, become an extension of the home. Tokyo leads this development of dividual space with small rentable booths like the Manga Kissa, the Kenko Land Sauna and the Love Hotel, but these remain solitary and inviolable, reinforcing a disconnect where people remain alone, even when surrounded. Vertical Alley redresses this paradox with community and permeability, encompassing an array of uses from refuge to social club.
Sited on the island of Tsukishima in Tokyo Bay, Vertical Alley is a six story commercial space, a mixture of small restaurants, bars, specialty stores and pavilions, each with varying degrees and types of permeability. These modules are stacked and organized around a thin open air atrium and circulation space, retaining both the intimacy and seclusion of an alley.