Not particularly a HIDDEN PATH but definitely something to see that is hidden away in a far corner of Kyoto main railway station, a scale model of the station built entirely with LEGO.
As you come down the escalator from the Skywalk across the top of Kyoto Station (which we'll feature in a later blog post) you come to a terrace area, called the East Square, with a cafe, NHK piano, and in the far corner to the left a model that used to be located in the shopping area below the station.
Pictured below, the Hachijo south side of Kyoto Station model as it looks out over the main platforms.
The model was put together ten years ago in 2012 to commemorate 50 years of Lego in Japan and 15 years of the Kyoto new station building.
Pictured below, the Karasuma north side of Kyoto Station model, featuring the main entrance to the station.
The very first Kyoto Station opened in 1877, was a red brick building and sat a little further north of the current site, and the guest of honour at the opening ceremony was non other than the emperor (Meiji) himself.
Pictured right, the first Kyoto Station. As the number of passengers increased a new improved station was required, and in 1914 it arrived, pictured below. Instead of brick this station included a lot of cedar wood in its materials and sadly this elegant building burnt down in 1950. As a replacement was needed quickly the third station was built in a blockish style from the material of the day, concrete, and it was indeed quite an unappealing affair.
Come the 90's and a competition was held to find a new design for a new station to commemorate 1200 years of Kyoto. The winner was Hiroshi Hara with his glass and steel design, and the construction project began. The building work took over 3 years to complete but the station was opened to the public in its new design in September 1997. Pictured below, the interior of Kyoto Station main entrance, Skywalk pictured top right, as it stands today and no doubt as it will look for the foreseeable future.
HIDDEN PATHS - Walking Historical Kyoto www.hiddenpathskyoto.com