Tokyo to lose newly built condominium blocking Mount Fuji view

A Japanese property developer has decided to raze a newly built condominium in west Tokyo after people living in nearby buildings complained that it blocked their views of Mount Fuji.

The 10-storey Grand Maison Kunitachi Fujimi Dori, consisting of 18 units sold for 70 to 80 million yen per apartment, according to Kyodo News.

Construction on the condominium, 10 minutes by foot from the Kunitachi railway station, began in January last year.

Developer Sekisui House adjusted the original blueprint after feedback from the neighbours, lowering each storey’s height and reducing the building from 11 storeys to 10.

Despite these changes, the developer said it will demolish the condominium due to “insufficient consideration for the impact on the scenery”.

A spokesperson for Sekisui House said on Tuesday that it had “voluntarily decided to discontinue the project”.

“There is no denying that the current situation has an enormous impact on the landscape. We have decided to prioritise the view from the road.

“We were aware of the culture that values scenery but we failed to consider it adequately.”

The condominium is in a part of western Tokyo renowned for its scenic views of Japan’s highest mountain, which seems to rise at the end of Fujimi Street, aptly named “Fuji Viewing” street.

The new tall building obstructs half of the view of the majestic mountain.

Tenants were scheduled to move into the new building next month.

“We didn’t want to lose the appeal of our town, where on a sunny day you have a clear view of Mount Fuji,” one unidentified resident told Japanese broadcaster TBS.

The developer will record the construction and demolition costs as extraordinary losses and will offer buyers compensation or alternative forms of redress.

Last month, a Japanese town completed the installation of a large mesh barrier to block the view of Mount Fuji in an attempt to discourage badly behaved tourists from taking photos at the spot.

Mount Fuji is seen through a hole on a black screen installed across from a convenience store in Fujikawaguchiko town in central Japan (AP)
Mount Fuji is seen through a hole on a black screen installed across from a convenience store in Fujikawaguchiko town in central Japan (AP)

Frustrated residents have for years complained about foreign visitors to Fujikawaguchiko littering, trespassing and breaking traffic rules in pursuit of taking the perfect photo of the iconic stratovolcano.

The blocked spot offers a view of the perennially snowcapped mountain soaring above a Lawson’s convenience store.

Residents have long complained that visitors who flock to the spot often park illegally or block pedestrians from using the pavement.

The black netting used to cover the view measures 20m by 2.5m.

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