Tokyo Toilet project location, public toilets using electrically opaque glass.

#12: Nabeshima Shōtō Park

A Walk in the Woods


Location #12 is within the Nabeshima Shōtō Park at 2-10-7 Sōtō, Shibuya.

The architect Kengo Kuma, who designed it, is a Distinguished Professor and Professor Emeritus at the University of Tokyo. Among other international awards, he received Finland's Spirit of Nature Wood Architecture Award.

He wrote that the goal was a "toilet village", a cluster of small buildings that blends into the forest.

Visiting the Toilet

Nabeshima Shōtō Park is a 900-meter walk west from the madness of the Shibuya Crossing.

Shibuya Crossing.

You walk through the unusual commercial-promotional environment around Shibuya Crossing, through several blocks of typical retail and dining, and then your surroundings quickly become residential. Soon you approach the southeast entrance of Nabeshima Shōtō Park.

Nabeshima Shōtō Park entrance

The Nabeshima Shōtō Park Public Toilet is a short distance inside.

Overview of Nabeshima Shōtō Park Public Toilet

Here's the floor plan. The architect wrote:

We designed a toilet village inside the lush greenery of Shōtō Park. The five huts, each covered with eared cedar board louvers installed at random angles, are connected by a walk in the woods that disappears into the forest. Each toilet that makes up the village is designed with a distinct layout, facility, and interior to accommodate different needs (family, dressing and grooming, wheelchair, etc). [...]

Floor plan of Nabeshima Shōtō Park Public Toilet
Components of the 'Toilet Village' at Shōtō Park Public Toilet
Entrance to a room for women, men, and people with babies.

This one is simple, for routine use. A toilet, a sink, and a changing table for a baby.

Toilet and vessel sink at Nabeshima Shōtō Park Public Toilet
Washlet toilet at Nabeshima Shōtō Park Public Toilet
Urinal and large wood slices at Nabeshima Shōtō Park Public Toilet
Entry to universal toilet at Nabeshima Shōtō Park Public Toilet

Here's the entrance to the universal toilet, the column of pictograms barely fits into the margin of the door frame.

The contrast to the cedar planks makes the red emergency light more visible here than at other locations. All the Tokyo Toilet facilities had a red light triggered by an emergency switch next to the universal toilet and possibly next to others. Often the emergency light and floor plan share a pedestal.

Inside, more slices of timber fill a wall.

Universal toilet at Nabeshima Shōtō Park Public Toilet
Ostomate fixture at Nabeshima Shōtō Park Public Toilet

There's a peaceful pond, and a nice playground area.

Pond and water wheel at Nabeshima Shōtō Park

Moving on to the Next Location

Next❯ #13: Higashi Sanchome

Tokyo Toilet — Overview and Introduction
#1: Sasazuka Greenway #2: Hatagaya #3: Nanagō Dōri Park #4: Nishihara 1-chōme Park #5: Nishisandō #6: Yoyogi Hachiman #7: Haru No Ogawa Community Park #8: Yoyogi Fukamachi Mini Park #9: Urasando #10: Jingūmae #11: Jingū Dōri Park #12: Nabeshima Shōtō Park #13: Higashi Sanchome Park #14: Ebisu Park #15: Ebisu Station #16: Ebisu East Park #17: Hiroo East Park

Other Toilets in Japan: