Gate Tower Building

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This article is about the Gate Tower Building in Fukushima-ku, Osaka, Japan. For the one in Rinku Town, see Rinku Gate Tower Building.
Gate Tower Building
Gate Tower Building
Gate Tower Building is located in Japan
Gate Tower Building
Location within Japan
General information
Type Office building
Location 5-4-21 Fukushima, Fukushima-ku, Osaka
Country Japan
Coordinates 34°41′53″N 135°29′23″E / 34.698102°N 135.489629°E / 34.698102; 135.489629
Completed 1992
Client Suezawa Sangyo Co. Ltd.
Height 71.9 m (236 ft)
Technical details
Structural system Reinforced concrete and partly steel frame
Floor count 16 above ground, 2 underground, 1 mechanical penthouse
Floor area 7,956 m2 (85,640 sq ft)
Design and construction
Architect Azusa Sekkei, Yamamoto-Nishihara Kenchiku Sekkei Jimusho
Main contractor Sato Kogyo Co. Ltd.
Umeda Exit

Gate Tower Building (ゲートタワービル gēto tawā biru?) is a 16-story office building in Fukushima-ku, Osaka, Japan. It is notable for the highway that passes through the building. It has been nicknamed "beehive" referencing its appearance as a "bustling place".


The building has a double core construction, with a circular cross section. The Umeda Exit of the Ikeda Route of the Hanshin Expressway system (when exiting the highway from the direction of Ikeda) passes between the fifth and seventh floors of this building. The highway is the tenant of those floors. The elevator passes through the floors without stopping: floor 4 being followed by floor 8. The floors through which the highway passes consist of elevators, stairways and machinery. The highway does not make contact with the building. It passes through as a bridge, held up by supports next to the building. The highway is surrounded by a structure to protect the building from noise and vibration. The roof has a helipad.


A wood and charcoal business held the property rights for this plot of land since the early Meiji period, but the gradual move to other sources of fuel resulted in the deterioration of those company buildings. In 1983, redevelopment of the area was approved, but building permits were refused because the highway was already being planned. The property rights' holders refused to give up, and negotiated with the Hanshin Expressway corporation for approximately five years to reach the current solution.

Although normally highway corporations purchase the land they build a highway on or over, it is not guaranteed to succeed and therefore issues like this can arise.

For that reason, the highway laws, city planning laws, city redevelopment laws and building codes were partly revised in 1989 to permit a so-called Multi-Level Road System (立体道路制度 rittai dōro seido?) that allows the unified development of highways and buildings in the same space. This system was originally designed to facilitate the construction of the second Ring Road in the vicinity of Toranomon, Minato-ku, Tokyo, but in the end was not applied there. Instead, the system was put into effect in the construction of the Gate Tower Building, becoming Japan's first building to have a highway pass through it. Normally, highways are still built underground in these cases, and passing through a building is an extremely rare occurrence.


  • Address: 5-4-21 Fukushima, Fukushima-ku, Osaka
  • Completed: 1992
  • Site area: 2,353 m2
  • Construction area: 760 m2
  • Total floor area: 7,956 m2
  • Structure: Reinforced concrete and partly steel frame
  • Height: 71.9 m
  • Floors: 16 floors above ground, 2 floors underground and 1 floor counted as the mechanical penthouse[clarification needed]
  • Purpose: Office building
  • Client: Suezawa Sangyo Co. Ltd.
  • Designer: Azusa Sekkei and Yamamoto-Nishihara Kenchiku Sekkei Jimusho
  • Builder: Sato Kogyo Co. Ltd.

See also[edit]

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