In the late 1800s, British engineer Henry Spencer Palmer, along with financier Shibusawa Eiichi, built the Yokohama Shipbuilding Dock. It eventually grew to 3 different docks and, between 1889 to the late 1970s, was responsible for producing some of Japan’s most famous ships.
But as the tide of history turned, the building yard was eventually shuttered. But a multi-year effort to re-appropriate the historic land has resulted in the completion of a dynamic co-working space called Bukatsudo.
Bukatsu, or after-school club activities, are an important rite of passage in junior high school life. After a long day memorizing kanji and attending classes, students will then go to their own bukatsu: it could be kendo club, cooking club, or physics club. Within the Japanese culture, this tradition provides an essential way for students to bond with classmates and make friends by sharing hobbies.
The city of Yokohama decided to take the bukatsu tradition to the next level. Architects and community members joined forces to reimagine a derelict shipbuilding dock into a useful hub for community activity, realizing a stunning co-working space that won the 2014 Good Design Award. If you can imagine your local YMCA located on the basement floor of the oldest stone shipbuilding dock in Japan, then you’ve made a great start towards understanding how special this place really is.
Welcome to Bukatsudo, a new co-working space that includes an atelier, a coffee stand, a kitchen, various co-working spaces, and more. Here, Yokohama community members can come together and share their interests, sip coffee, study, offer lectures and workshops, and thus enrich the city. Bukatsudo has become a valuable cultural asset to the city of Yokohama, designated as a nurturing space for fostering relationships and creative projects.
Visitors are encouraged, so drop-in to experience Bukatsudo’s vibrant community for yourself, for only ¥300.