(Renewed in 2016)
Multipurpose Hall Sports Facility / Indoor Arena｜Aug. 1, 2016
An Exciting Spot Born in the Tourist City of Yokohama
In addition to being one of Japan’s leading international seaports, Yokohama also has a long history as a center for culture, trade and industry. Today, the combination of its picturesque historical sites with the futuristic urban scenery of such sites as the ‘Minatomirai 21’ complex continues to fascinate all those who visit it.
The area surrounding Shin-Yokohama Station is referred to as the ‘new city’, and boasts numerous cultural facilities catering to art or sports, parks, commercial establishments, city hotels, etc., winning it a reputation as a hot area. Situated in the center of this district, the Yokohama Arena is only five minutes walk from the station, offering outstanding accessibility, and this multipurpose event hall is one of the largest and best equipped in the world. Referred to fondly as the ‘Yokoari’, together with the adjoining Shin-Yokohama Park and the Nissan Stadium, which boasts the highest capacity in Japan, it offers dreams and inspiration to large numbers of people.
A joint venture company, financed by Yokohama City, the Kirin Brewery Company Ltd. and the PRINCE HOTELS,INC, the Yokohama Arena first opened for business in April 1989. In the twenty-seven years that have followed it has served as the venue for a huge variety of events, including coming-of-age ceremonies, concerts and sports.
The reason why this was possible is that the Yokohama Arena utilizes what is known as the ‘Lambda System’ of movable seating, allowing the layout of main arena to be transformed freely to suit the event taking place†flat floor, tiered floor, audience seating, stage, etc. Furthermore, the Lambda System is completely computerized, allowing changes in the layout to be made rapidly, so the day after a nighttime event, it can be reorganized to host something completely different. With a maximum capacity of 17,000, this can be said to be the reason why it not only retains a high level of utilization but also increases this year-by-year.
Renovation to Improve Ease-of-Use
In July 2016 the Yokohama Area was reopened after a major, six-month renovation during which it was fitted with the very latest facilities. Among the new equipment installed is a 366-inch LED screen at the front entrance, allowing a view of the proceedings inside and raising the excitement of the visitors before an event opens.
One object of the renovation was the replacement of all the interior signs. The new signs that are fitted to the ceilings, walls, columns, etc., employ pictograms with clear designs, allowing children, the elderly and overseas visitors to understand their meaning at a glance. This kind of thoughtfulness is evident in every detail throughout the arena. For instance, in answer to requests from women visitors, the toilets have been given a new, sanitary appearance with an area for doing makeup and facilities for nappy changing (this is also available in the men’s’ toilets). The multipurpose toilets for wheelchair users have also been renovated and handrails on the stairs within the building replaced with nonslip material.
The ease-of-use concept can also be seen in the changes made to the seating in the stands. For instance, the seat numbering was redesigned and improved to be visible from a distance. Attention was also paid to the comfort and ease of maintenance of the stand seats in an effort to make the spectator’s experience as good as possible.
The box seats and suite seating was also improved during the renovation, giving the impression of having been raised by one rank. This was achieved utilizing seats produced by France’s Quinette Gallay, a member of the Kotobuki Seating Group. Founded in 1947, this veteran company is a top manufacturer of theater chairs, providing the seating for the Paris Opera, and many other major European theaters. The Yokohama Arena is the first arena in Japan where it is possible to experience the luxurious comfort of these seats whose pedigree can be traced to Europe’s theatrical culture.
The Yokohama Arena provides a venue for both concerts by famous artists and sporting events, attracting large numbers of visitors from around the country and even overseas, while simultaneously working to offer support to local events. An unveiling ceremony was held to introduce the new facilities, attracting 3,000 local people. Live performances were held on the stage and the whole event was a outstanding success. It is expected that the Yokohama Arena will continue to play a vital role in the revitalization of the whole area.
- Yokohama City, Kanagawa
- YOKOHAMA ARENA CO., LTD
- Jul, 2016
- Design and Construction
- TAKENAKA CORPORATION