SHOWA SNAP: Metropolitan Expressway Route 4 at Asakasa Mitsuke in the 1970s

In preparation for the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, the Metropolitan Expressway Route 4 Route at Akasaka Mitsuke was rushed to completion. Below the highway, Aoyama Street (National Route 246) intersects with Sotobori Street. Crossing under the right-most branch is the Benkei Bridge heading toward the wonderfully old school New Otani Hotel. Sadly The building in the center is long gone, along with its Mazda advertising, replaced with new towers obscuring the silhouette of Mt Fuji. Here’s what this area looks like today, and here’s what it would look like as you’re hurtling westward on it today.

 Image: eBay

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5 Responses to SHOWA SNAP: Metropolitan Expressway Route 4 at Asakasa Mitsuke in the 1970s

  1. BlitzPig said:

    Interesting area. I took a “walk” around and found the Mexican Embassy, and also a large gated compound with guards at the entrance. No English signs. Any idea what it is?
    Lots of high end cars on the streets too…

  2. Tom A. said:

    It’s also the site of the last corner (or the last corner that requires slowing down, anyway) on the Tokyo Route 246 course from the Gran Turismo games.

  3. Negishi no Keibajo said:

    A few blocks down the street from my “home away from home”. When I started coming to this area, I tried to find the location of the old Sanno Hotel where DOD families like mine went to. Alas, not even the locals could pin it down. It took awhile but figured it out. On Sotobori Dori, there is a corporate office building of Okamura. The street level lobby has a nice example of their Mikasa coupe. Stylish & also Japan’s first front wheel drive automatic. They developed torque converters for Japanese marques. They also built Japan’s first post-war airplane, the N-52. One thing I like about Japanese Corporate HQ’s is that they often have nice lobbies displaying their products & history.

    https://s31.wheelsage.org/format/picture/picture-gallery/o/okamura/mikasa_touring/okamura_mikasa_touring_7.jpg

    • Ben Hsu said:

      Yeah, love that about the lobbies. It’s always worth a peek inside if you’re in the vicinity of an OEM HQ. I stayed at the New Otani last time I was in Japan. There are still a lot of cool Showa touches around.

  4. F31roger said:

    Wow that is close to Hie Shrine!

    In February of this year, I was exploring the area in the morning.

    I went to Nissan Crossing, then Hibiya Square to see the Shin Godzilla statue and then walked around Kokyo Gaien. I was gonna go check out Hie Shrine, but left for Tochigi for the rest of the day.

    https://www.f31club.com/ourtravels/walking-around-ginza-area/

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