[Update February 12, 2014]
I understand that the innovative temporary-use facility known as “Mori Trust Garden TORA4” closed as of the end of January 2014, presumably for construction of a permanent structure in its place. In memoriam, here are a few more photos of this wonderful urban oasis, taken from the site’s “salad days” last spring.
An oasis of food, beer, movies, futsal, and…gardening…has sprouted in a former urban dead zone in the Toranomon / Kamiyacho 虎ノ門 / 神谷町 neighborhood of central Tokyo. This prime location had been vacant since 2009 when a hotel on the site was demolished.
Finally the land is being put to good use. The Mori Trust Garden TORA4 モリトラスト ガーデン トラヨン will occupy the site for approximately nine months until permanent redevelopment starts around January 2014. Until then I recommend visiting this creative, multi-use space. Nestled between tall office and apartment buildings, and situated on a quiet side street, TORA4 has something of a “secret garden” feel to it. My favorite feature is the bright and airy beer garden / terrace that provides covered outdoor seating with views of (part of) Tokyo Tower and the surrounding skyline. Looks like a great place to enjoy a beer on a warm evening (even if it is just Kirin).
Amenities include restaurants (Kirin Ichiban Garden, a food truck, and gourmet hot dogs from Piedpiper Rebirthproject Cafe) a movie tent (The Garden Theater), a futsal (footsal / soccer) field, and a public garden (Mori Tora Farm) where you can rent a plot of land and get lessons on how to grow vegetables. And most interesting is the enormous plant-sculpture Herbman, who “travels around the world, using his café to teach people the effects of the herbs growing on his body.”
For links, see the Mori Trust Garden TORA4 webpage. UPDATED >>> website is no longer active; the address had been: http://mt-garden.com/about.html
Map & Address:
- Mori Trust Garden TORA4, Minato-ku, Toranomon 4丁目 1-1
- モリトラスト ガーデン トラヨン, 東京都港区虎ノ門 4丁目 1-1
- (google map approx. address)
The site when it was a vacant lot (October 2012):
- mt-garden com (dead link)
- facebook. com/MTgarden tora4 (dead link)