Accoya takes a hike with Tokyo station refurb

17 November 2015

A train station serving one of Tokyo’s most popular hiking beauty spots has been given a sustainable makeover with Accoya.

The modified wood was used in the renovation of Takaosanguchi station, located at the foot of Japan’s Mount Takao. The material, manufactured by Accsys Technologies, was used for the external cladding and exposed roof area.

It’s a busy station, providing the hub through which most visitors to the mountain pass, and it offers travellers direct access to one of the closest natural recreation areas to central Tokyo.

The combination of beautiful scenery and an historic temple provide attractive hiking opportunities, attracting 2.5 million visitors to the area, which is a 50-minute train journey from the Japanese capital’s metropolitan area.

Designed by Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, the two-storey station also includes a new bathhouse and restaurant. Kuma set out to create a sanctuary for weary hikers and residents in the area, renovating the station in spring 2015 using Accoya for cladding and on the station’s exposed roof.

Distributed throughout Japan by Ikegami, Accoya was chosen by the architects due to its durability in humid and wet conditions, which are typical of the mountainous area. Accoya was also chosen to reflect the densely wooded mountain landscape around Mount Takao.

Tomoshige Ikegami of distributors Ikegami said: “We recommended the architects used Accoya due to its excellent dimensional stability. Inside the station, thin ribs of Accoya used to construct the vaulted roof will remain straight and strong for many years. The wood is also very attractive, with the clean parallel lines of Accoya creating a striking façade which will require no maintenance whatsoever.”

Railway operators Keio Corporation are said to be impressed with the finished result, and have decided to use Accoya for additional projects.

Laura Ladd, head of marketing for Accsys said: “Accoya offers outstanding durability which matches and exceeds the properties of tropical hardwood and is guaranteed for 50 years for use above ground. For cladding projects the product is durable enough to withstand hot and damp conditions, and also offers the advantage of a very long maintenance cycle. It is therefore the perfect choice for Takaosanguchi station which welcomes thousands of visitors through its doors each year.”

Recent field testing by the Japan Wood Protection Association has shown that Accoya offers improved dimensional stability when assessed against a range of other woods including Teak, demonstrating Accoya’s advanced performance compared to competitor products.