Buildings dating from the Meiji era (1868-1912) up until pre-war are slowly disappearing in Tokyo and it’s not because of earthquakes or poor construction, but due to owners selling off their properties to developers. A recent survey by a research group made up of local architects has found that in the 30 years up until 2010, 73% of these buildings in Tokyo’s 23 wards have been demolished. In Chuo-ku and Shibuya-ku, over 80% of buildings were lost.
Over half of the buildings were owned by private individuals or companies. The research group said that a public preservation system is essential to protect more buildings from meeting the same fate.