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Virtually Invisible: High-Speed Train by Kazuyo Sejima

However, the intentions behind the look of the train are “friendly and gentle” according to its designer. Kazuyo Sejima, Pritzker laureate and co-founder of the SANAA architecture studio, has made this clear in various interviews. Sejima was commissioned by the railway company Seibu to design a new train for the Red Arrow series on the occasion of the company’s 100th anniversary.  In contrast to the trains currently in use, which are boxy and feature go-faster stripes, the new model will practically be camouflaged against the landscape. This is made possible by means of its semi-reflective surface, which mirrors its surroundings. This is an exciting project, and the first of its kind for the Japanese architect, who has designed the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York, the Zollverein-Kubus in Essen, the Rolex Learning Centre in Lausanne, the Christian Dior Building in Tokyo and other structures. The main difference in this latest job is the fact that architecture is generally static. On the other hand, the budget is similar: Seibu plans to invest about 90 million dollars in the new train design.

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