Residents were supposed to start moving in next month.

In July, Japanese real estate developer Sekisui House was scheduled to finish construction on a high-rise condominium in Kunitachi, a district of western Tokyo. However, with just a few weeks until the first residents were supposed to get their keys and move in, Sekisui House has announced that instead of putting the finishing touches on the building, they’re going to tear the whole thing down.

So why is Sekisui House scrapping a the project after a year and a half of construction? There’s a hint in the building’s name: Grand Maison Fujimidori. Fujimidori is the name of the street the building is located on, and it translates to “Street with a View of Mt. Fuji.” However, while the units on the upper floors of the Grand Maison Fujimidori. Fujimidori would boast nice views of Japan’s tallest mountain, the building itself worsens the view of Mt. Fuji from the street.

▼ The view of Mt. Fuji from Fujimidori before the condo was built can be seen on the left in this comparison shot, and the view after the building went up is on the right.

Unsurprisingly, a number of people who already live in the neighborhood weren’t happy about the negative impact to the vista on a street named for its nice view of Mt. Fuji. Shortly after Sekisui House announced the project in February of 2021, complaints from locals started coming in. In response, in September of that year Sekisui House said that it would revise its blueprints for the building, shrinking it from its originally planned 11-story, 36.09-meter (118.41-foot) height down to 10 floors and 32.7 meters. Those in opposition pressed for a further reduction, but in January of 2022 Sekisui House said the building’s dimensions had been finalized. The development plan was approved by the Kunitachi government that November, and construction began in January of 2023.

▼ As can be seen in the video here, the condo’s exterior is already complete.

On the 4th of this month, Sekisui House developer informed the Kunitachi government that it will be demolishing Grand Maison Fujimidori. Fujimidori without any residents moving in, saying that “We did not sufficiently consider the effect on the surrounding area, including the scenery.”

In a statement posted to the company’s website on the 11th, Sekisui House says that as construction progressed and they saw the actual effect the building had on the view, they “have come to the decision to prioritize the view from Fujimidori and are voluntarily cancelling the construction project.”

Sekisui House hasn’t said how many of the building’s 18 units, which were priced between 70 and 80 million yen (approximately US$450,000 to US%515,000) had been sold, but has said that it will be making all efforts to make things financially right for those who had been planning to move into Grand Maison Fujimidori.

Source: Asahi Shimbun, NHK News Web, Nitele News, Sekisui House
Top image: Pakutaso
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