Shibuya Crossing in London

5 Nov

In 渋谷 (Shibuya, Tokyo), there’s a famous intersection near the JR train station that, when the pedestrian signal turns green, all the cars have red lights and must stop and people can walk across the intersection in any direction.
The crosswalks are painted not only straight in four directions…but also diagonally.

shibuya

Shibuya Crossing

(Actually there are a number of intersections around Tokyo like this…but Shibuya’s is most famous).

Well, London, England has just made a similar crosswalk at one of that city’s busiest intersections.
At the opening ceremony for the new crosswalk, the Mayor of London said that the intersection’s new crosswalk is entirely based on Shibuya Crossing in Tokyo.

In fact, there were Japanese 太鼓 (Taiko drums) drummers playing at the opening ceremony!

london

London's new crosswalk based on Shibuya Crossing.

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14 Responses to “Shibuya Crossing in London”

  1. DWB November 8, 2009 at 11:09 am #

    Thanks for the advice! Okinawa is supposedly the unspoilt Japan, am I right? I’ve heard they wield some extremely potent alcohol called awamori?

    As for Hokkaido, the colder the better! Very interested in those hot springs where the monkeys join you.

    Like

    • tokyo5 November 8, 2009 at 11:15 am #

      Wow. You’re commenting just as I am!

      You know about Japan well!

      Okinawan Awamori often has a snake in the bottle! Don’t be surprised!

      Like

  2. DWB November 8, 2009 at 10:51 am #

    Thank you very much! I’m enjoying yours as well – I’ll lap up anything Japanese. =)

    Yes, just in September; a truly fascinating place and I’m already dying to go back. Saw the main cities like Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, but I’m really keen on exploring Hokkaido and Okinawa. Next time, I suppose!

    Like

    • tokyo5 November 8, 2009 at 11:07 am #

      >I’m enjoying yours (blog) as well

      Thanks. Please visit (and comment) often!

      >I’m really keen on exploring Hokkaido and Okinawa.

      Both of those areas are great!

      I love Okinawan food.
      And I recommend see Hokkaido in February…and going to the famous 「札幌雪まつり」 (“Sapporo Snow Festival“).

      Like

  3. DWB November 8, 2009 at 9:07 am #

    That new crossing looks great! Must certainly look out for it on my next trip to London.

    Like

    • tokyo5 November 8, 2009 at 10:48 am #

      I just looked at your site. I like your writing style!

      And you visited Tokyo last summer, didn’t you? How did you like it?

      Like

  4. Tornadoes28 November 6, 2009 at 3:38 am #

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Pasadena got the idea from Japan.

    Like

    • tokyo5 November 7, 2009 at 12:02 am #

      Well, the article I read said that it was a Japanese innovation.

      Like

  5. Tornadoes28 November 6, 2009 at 1:38 am #

    Although it may have been tried in places such as Los Angeles as early as the 1950s, Japan may be the first to use it continuously and on a larger scale. Do you know when places such as Shibuya started using these types of crosswalks?

    Like

    • tokyo5 November 6, 2009 at 2:00 am #

      >Do you know when places such as Shibuya started using these types of crosswalks?

      I don’t know when…but over nineteen years at least, because they were here (in Japan) when I first came here in 1990.

      Like

  6. Tornadoes28 November 5, 2009 at 4:04 am #

    Pasadena California has had this type of crossing at a few intersections for about 10 years or so now. They are in their popular Old Town district of the city.

    Like

    • tokyo5 November 6, 2009 at 12:33 am #

      Really?
      I have never seen this kind of crosswalk in America.

      Anyways, this type of crosswalk was first done in Japan.
      It seems common sense…especially for large crowded cities.

      Like

      • Tornadoes28 November 6, 2009 at 1:10 am #

        Actually, Pasadena debuted its first diagonal crossing approximately 15 years ago. Diagonal crosswalks were even tried in Los Angeles as early as 1956. They eventually disappeared but have recently made some comebacks following Pasadena’s lead. Diagonal crosswalks have been placed at some intersections in the Westwood area of Los Angeles city as well as the Historic Core in Downtown Los Angeles over a year ago.

        Like

      • tokyo5 November 6, 2009 at 1:35 am #

        Is that right?
        I heard that it was first done in Japan…and that’s why the London mayor said that their new crosswalk is based on Japan’s.

        Like

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