Tokyo Is Preparing for Floods ‘Beyond Anything We’ve Seen.’
October 9, 2017 10:09 PM   Subscribe

Tokyo Is Preparing for Floods ‘Beyond Anything We’ve Seen’ In light of flooding in major cities in the US, the NY Times covers Tokyo's Metropolitan Area Outer Underground Discharge Channel (首都圏外郭放水路 shutoken gaikaku hōsuiro), the world's largest underground flood water diversion facility.

When projects like Boston's Big Dig ($14B) or the Seattle Tunnel ($3B) have price tags in the billions, the $2B Tokyo paid for it's flood insurance seems reasonable and prescient. Moreso when one considers that the Greater Tokyo metro area holds 30% of Japan's population and contributes almost 20% of Japan's GDP.
posted by gen (15 comments total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
 
I'd love to see a concert in the MAOUDC, but good luck getting unobstructed seats.
posted by fairmettle at 11:21 PM on October 9


Did anyone else instantly think of Moria when they saw the photo at the top of the first link?
posted by Start with Dessert at 11:23 PM on October 9 [7 favorites]


It is possible Kuniharu Abe delved too greedily and deep.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 11:58 PM on October 9 [9 favorites]


Only $2 billion? That's like a mile of BART track.
posted by ryanrs at 12:09 AM on October 10 [5 favorites]


Disaster preparedness and water drainage infrastructure are two of Japan's specialties, so I'm not surprised they're all over this.
posted by davejh at 12:16 AM on October 10 [4 favorites]


I quite want to see this place. Looks incredible.
posted by MattWPBS at 5:28 AM on October 10 [2 favorites]


...the world's largest underground flood water diversion facility

Careful choice of words there. Chicago's Deep Tunnel is 350x larger, but since they're using outdoor quarries as reservoirs then they miss out on the title I guess.
posted by JoeZydeco at 5:37 AM on October 10


Did anyone else instantly think of Moria when they saw the photo at the top of the first link?

Balrog!
posted by filtergik at 5:37 AM on October 10


Careful choice of words there. Chicago's Deep Tunnel is 350x larger, but since they're using outdoor quarries yt as reservoirs then they miss out on the title I guess.

Chicago's Deep Tunnel has large final storage but very poor capacity for the flow. Almost every decent sized rainstorm overflows its capacity and dumps untreated sewage in the Chicago River and still will when the project is done. Enjoy the recreational waterway!
posted by srboisvert at 6:22 AM on October 10 [1 favorite]


I quite want to see this place. Looks incredible.

you'd probably want to wear boots that you could hose down, though. no telling what was entrained with the flood water that settled onto the floors.
posted by indubitable at 6:47 AM on October 10


I'm assuming they'll be developing some sort of giant robot to assist in the construction efforts.

Then, of course, they'll need some way to police the giant robots.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 6:49 AM on October 10 [5 favorites]


I'm short on reading time this morning: Please tell me the Big Dig & Seattle projects planned for flood control.
posted by yoga at 6:59 AM on October 10


you'd probably want to wear boots that you could hose down, though. no telling what was entrained with the flood water that settled onto the floors.

I'm betting Tokyo separates their sewage and flood water systems unlike a lot of the older American cities that have a single system for both purposes. It would still be gross because of street runoff and illegal dumping but probably nothing like what is beneath the streets in Chicago, New York or London (or what ends up in their rivers)
posted by srboisvert at 8:08 AM on October 10 [1 favorite]


Wait, those cities don't separate their storm water from their sewage? They're huge! Do they even process their sewage? Why isn't there, like, a hundred mile brown stain around them?
posted by Joe in Australia at 6:48 PM on October 10


I've been there before! You can get a free tour reservation here. It was actually completely clean - no debris at all or noticeable smell. Someone asked about moss/mold, and they said it dries out frequently enough that nothing really grows. Thinking about it now, I guess I completely took the cleanliness for granted because, well, Japan. There was a soccer field above it because what else are you going to use the space for, and people like to film sci-fi shows and music videos and commercials there.
posted by mshrike at 6:48 PM on October 10 [2 favorites]


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