Walking in Tokyo Shibuya at night
Shibuya (渋谷) is one of the twenty-three city wards of Tokyo, but often refers to just the popular shopping and entertainment area found around Shibuya Station. In this regard, Shibuya is one of Tokyo’s most colorful and busy districts, packed with shopping, dining and nightclubs serving swarms of visitors that come to the district everyday.
Shibuya is a center for youth fashion and culture, and its streets are the birthplace to many of Japan’s fashion and entertainment trends. Over a dozen major department store branches can be found around the area catering to all types of shoppers. Most of the area’s large department and fashion stores belong to either Tokyu or Seibu, two competing corporations.
A prominent landmark of Shibuya is the large intersection in front of the station’s Hachiko Exit. The intersection is heavily decorated by neon advertisements and giant video screens and gets flooded by pedestrians each time the crossing light turns green, making it a popular photo and movie filming spot.
Shibuya Station and surroundings are undergoing major redevelopment over the coming years. On the east side of the station, a new large culture, shopping and office complex, the Shibuya Hikarie, opened in spring 2012. A year later, the Tokyu Toyoko Line platforms were moved underground, enabling through-traffic with the Fukutoshin Subway Line.
Furthermore, a major redevelopment of the Shibuya Station building is now underway, including the construction of a new, 230 meter tall skyscraper to be completed by around 2020 and the move of the platforms of the JR Saikyo Line next to the platforms of the JR Yamanote Line. In addition, the pedestrian plaza on the west side of the station will be enlarged and made more pedestrian friendly in combination with a rearrangement of the bus and taxi stops. The entire project is scheduled for completion around 2027.