Mori’s visionary philosophy for cities updated

A pioneer who redefined urban life in Japan, former Chairman and CEO of Mori Building, the late Minoru Mori’s thinking and philosophy is now be available in English with the translation of his book “Hills – Challenging Cities.”

Minoru Mori was one of Tokyo’s most influential building tycoons, who helped reshape the cityscape with the construction of such landmarks as Roppongi Hills, Omotesando Hills as well as constructing the tallest building in China: Shanghai’s World Financial Center.

This new edition of his book features specially written material, such additional new commentary written after The Great East Japan Earthquake, which happened as the English version was under preparation: an experience which truly showed Mori’s Roppongi Hills’ exceptional value as a “city in which you would want to escape to.”

“Roppongi Hills is an urban complex that realizes the concept of the ‘vertical garden city’ that I have been long advocating,” Mori says in his book.

“Urban infrastructure should have enhanced earthquake resistance and safety, and through its own electricity generation systems this kind of urban complex could truly play an important role as a shelter in the case of disasters.”

“This is really the kind of city ‘you would want to escape to, rather than escape from.’”

“This urban proposal is a transformation from cities packed with buildings to ones where citizens can enjoy larger open spaces covered by greenery by more efficiently using the sky and the underground and by creating raised ground levels for more underground space,” Mori said.

“This year’s mega-earthquake has shown to the world the safety, the superiority and the benefits of such an urban model,” he said.

“Since the earthquake, we have been receiving many tenant inquiries from non-Japanese firms.”

“Japan has lost a lot in this catastrophe. But at the same time, we learned a lot. We must put our learning into practice in order to create even safer and more secure cities, and we must share this knowledge and experience with people around the world.”

Mori Minoru passed away on March 8, 2012

The Making of Vertical Garden Cities is available in ePub ebook format now:

The print version will be released later this month.