Mile Trees / urban scape design / Japan Highway Public Corporation
Design for the installation of symbolic trees along the Joshinetsu Highway, in the last section of the newly opened highway, between Nakagou and Jouetsu. The Symbol Tree design project, stand for the unified image of the flow from the mountain range of Gunma and Nagano to the seaside of Niigata. Every 5 km metasequoia trees are planted in a row, to express the symbolic distance to the sea. One could also say a modern version of milestones. From the mountainside to the seaside the metasequoia trees are getting less. From five trees in row in Nakagou to only a single tree in Jouetsu. Through the repetitive appearance of the metasequoia tree and their altering amount, the rich nature that links the seaside with the mountainside is successfully put into scene. Under the metasequoia trees are black curbs, seamed with white sand, to raise the symbolical meaning. Instead of designing the new scenery of the highway that crosses the beautiful landscape with big artificial structures that disturb the harmony, plants, stones and gravel, elements of nature, were used for the new scenery design. To take in elements from the surrounding nature, that allows communication between the manmade and the natural, is considered as new landscape design.