3D Printed City Dioramas
Alex from 3D Printing Industry
Whether it’s Rome, Paris, Hong Kong or New York – we all have that one city lodged in the back of our mind that we would just love to visit or return to. Though real life often gets in the way, one Japanese company is now offering a tangible solution to get part of that city into your home. While we all have photos or souvenirs, 3D printing specialists iJet is now selling amazing 3D printed scaled dioramas of cities, enabling you to return to that one neighborhood of Tokyo or Hiroshima again and again.
And these aren’t just cheap images of what Tokyo approximately looks like, either. Instead, iJet teamed up with Japanese mapping specialists Zenrin to create a new line of cityscapes that are so detailed they could easily hang in an art gallery or museum. Most importantly, several neighborhoods can be selected, as you obviously want to look at that one defining piece of architecture. As you can see above, the Tokyo Tower is one of the landmarks selected for their examples, while the iconic Jingsu Stadium, home to baseball legends and history, is another. Their models of Hiroshima, meanwhile, show the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, known as the Atomic Bomb Dome – where you can even see models of the city before and after the drop of the bomb in 1945.
Most importantly, the company says that they are willing to accept requests to bring any other location alive as a 3D printed model. So if you want to see your favorite spot, city or even your own neighborhood inside a beautiful photo frame, you can. It’s a very remarkable and touching approach to memories, dreams and architecture, and is especially impressive for the very high level of quality that these bird’s-eye views have. If you knew someone who lived there, you could definitely recognize their home. To achieve that quality, iJet teamed up with prominent Japanese mapping experts Zenrin, to ensure that all the roads, highways and buildings are all accurate.
And Zenrin is more than capable of providing that accuracy, as they are experts at mapping major Japanese cities, for applications in architecture simulation, construction, civil engineering, driving simulation and game development. They are also aiming to expand their 3D printable data, as this is an expanding market. They are even actually offering a 3D city model to game developers, free of charge, as part of their ‘Zenrin City Asset series’. The data for that city, which can be seen below, was based on the Akihabara in Tokyo – Japan’s foremost area for everything anime and manga. “Since the data is based on the actual streets, you can reproduce the realistic city as a virtual space in the game,” they say. Their hope is that this data will give a boost to creative activities.
But these 3D printed city dioramas by iJet are far more touching and meaningful. All have been 3D printed using Flashforge 3D printing solutions, and several different 3D printed models are already available through the iJet website. Prices depend on size, which a 10-centimetre (3.9-inch) square model costing 9,800 yen (US$87), while the largest 30-centimeetre model costs 140,000 yen (US$ 1,250). Scale can also be varied, especially with an eye on corporate orders from local governments and the construction industry. To make them as presentable as possible, all come in a very stylish frame.