The Former JR Kyushu Headquarters Bldg. was built in 1937 as the third Moji Branch Office of Mitsui & Co. , Japan’s first general trading company. The second branch office was a 2-story wooden building constructed in 1901, and the third was a 2-story, Renaissance-style brick building constructed in 1910. The third building is a good example of a modern, American-style office building in line withwith the same style as the Moji Yusen Bldg. standing diagonally opposite. It is a 6-story, reinforced concrete construction. Japan National Railways was sold in 1953 due to the dissolution of zaibatsu financial cliques after WWII, and the building was used as the Moji Railway Administrationve Office Bureau . With the privatization of Japan National Railways in 1987, it later became the first office building for JR Kyushu and was utilized until 2001. Compared with buildings today, there ceiling is a higher ceiling and it feels roomier. The huge facade has alternately arranged wide pilasters and tall windows to emphasize height. Originally, the building was tiled, and there was black granite above and /below the windows and window ledges, but today they aremortar is sprayed onwith mortar. In addition, the two road-facing sides of the building facing the roads have been changed from double-hung windows to double-sliding windows. Sculpting above the windows on the top floor and a sloped, pilastered apex save the building from a humdrum appearance. The impression is softened by a billowing created from sculpting and wide pilasters that are very slightly inclined inward. Also, the 1st-floor entrance is bordered by black granite and adorned with an art deco-style relief. This is the only decorative element. It is a piece by the sculptor, Takanobu Ajiki The same pattern is repeated on the two road-facing sides facing the roads, but on the back a portion of the upper part is recessed, and the backside of the building presents a different view than the front. After studying at the local Fukuoka Prefectural Fukuoka High School , the building’s designer, Gunpei Matsuda graduated from Nagoya Higher Technical School . He worked for Shimizu Gumi, Ltd. and then studied abroad at Cornell University in the United States. He was involved in the basic design of the Mitsui head office at the architectural firm of Trowbridge and Livingston , and following his return to Japan, was engaged in construction management for the same building. He later set up his own architectural firm and designed the Former JR Kyushu Headquarters Bldg. as the first multistoried building project for his business. When the Former Moji Mitsui Club was dismantled and reconstructed in front of the Former JR Kyushu Headquarters Bldg., in the Heisei era (1989–2019), the work by the brothers Gunpei Matsuda and Shohei Matsuda became a treasured landscape cityscape elements standing across the road from each other..
Address：1-6-2 Nishikaigan, Moji-ku, Kitakyushu, Fukuoka Prefecture
Hours : Differs depending on the facility
Closed : Differs depending on the facility
Fee : Free
Category: Constituent cultural properties
Genre: Story 2