Japan's new Tokyo Tower03 August, 2010 by Chad
The Tokyo Sky Tree is a new broadcasting tower being built by the combined efforts of a number of Japanese TV companies to replace the existing Tokyo Tower. When completed in December 2011, it will stand at 634 meters and will be the 2nd tallest structure in the world after the Burj Khalifa.
Unlike the Burj Khalifa though, the Tokyo Sky Tree actually is built out of necessity. The tower will make digital terrestrial television (being able to send digital hd broadcasts to conventional tv antenna instead of satellites or cables) a possibility in Japan.
Most developed countries (with the exception of Singapore of course) have already switched over to this method of transmitting since sending a single national-wide signal is far cheaper than relaying it through millions of cables.
Since many buildings now measure higher than the existing Tokyo Tower, it was not sufficient to provide complete coverage. Thus the construction for what was dubbed the New Tokyo Tower began in 2008.
Suggestions for the tower’s new name were collected from the public and a final 6 names were shortlisted. The “Tokyo Sky Tree” took the number one spot with 30% of the votes. Second place went to “Tokyo Edo Tower” since the tower was inspired by the classic pagoda design.
Public response to the chosen name has been mixed and quite a bit of negative feedback can be found online. I do think that it has a certain ring to it. I’m not too fond of the tower’s space age design though which pales in comparison to the Tokyo Tower’s old world charm.
The Tokyo Sky Tree’s English site is available here, though there’s noticeably less information than the Japanese site that reports the construction progress of the tower. It’s already reached 2/3rds of its final height.
There’s also a live webcam tracking the construction of the tower but it’s only accessible during Japanese office hours.
Currently, the public opening of the tower is scheduled for Spring 2012. I’ll probably head over when the time comes to check it out.Planning your holiday? We recommend visiting Agoda for a full list of hotels with early bird specials.