How did this happen? Apparently it’s the result of a freak zoning loophole that can be traced back to the Meiji Era. Construction negotiations stood at an impasse for five years, and when the builders finally reached a compromise, this is what happened.
The highway bores through levels 5 through 7 of the building, but lest an errant car come barreling through some hapless office worker’s cubicle, those floors contain no tenants, only elevator shafts and stairwells. In somewhat comical Japanese fashion, this most obvious trait was completely ignored when nicknaming the building, which has been christened “the beehive” due to its busy atmosphere. Follow the jump for one more photo of what it looks like as you’re about to drive through it.