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New Balance’s Latest Tokyo Shop is Built in a Kura, Dismantled and Relocated from Kawagoe

New Balance’s Latest Tokyo Shop is Built in a Kura, Dismantled and Relocated from Kawagoe

New Balance, the American footwear company, has had a low-key presence in Japan since the 1980s. With 15 stores across Japan, the company shys away from the spotlight, working with equally low-key ambassadors like Ryuichi Sakamoto, rather than glitzy athletes or celebrities. But their latest concept store was an ambitious one: a project that called for the dismantling of an old kura warehouse in Kawagoe, transporting it, and — piece by piece — reconstructing it in Tokyo.

An old, 122-year old kura warehouse was identified for the project. It was located in Kawagoe, a city northwest of Tokyo that’s known for their old clay warehouses and merchant homes. The kura was dismantled, piece by piece, and relocated to Tokyo where it was reassembled by craftsmen. The project was overseen by Schemata Architects, the same firm that has been responsible for all of Blue Bottle’s Japan locations.


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