Writings

Manhole covers in Japan

Monday, 18 Mar 2019

Japan’s decorated manhole covers—broadly encompassing storm drain, domestic water supply, electrical and other utility access covers—initially took shape as a public relations campaign for sewers. Beginning in the 1950s, the cast plates featured simple geometric patterns, such as the “Tokyo” and “Nagoya” designs. Japanese civil servant Yasutake Kameda conceived of the intricate, artistic versions in 1985, to help warm a skeptical rural population to the idea of the costly but necessary modernization of the country’s sewer system.

At this point in London I can see us trying something like this and it going full BorisBike™ and getting covered in bank logos.