Creating new ways to engage with Tokyo landmark

A technical dive into how Toranomon Hills Station Tower leveraged volumetric video to deliver a human-first, digital experience.

Toranomon Hills Station Tower, a prominent landmark in Tokyo, embarked on a creative journey to enhance visitors' expereinces through cutting-edge technology and art. As part of the vision of the digital twin project, an Augmented Reality (AR) mobile application 'Xplorer' was developed to seamlessly integrate volumetric video and visual positioning system (VPS) technologies.

This case study explores how TOKYO NODE LAB (Bascule Inc. and Mori Building Co., Ltd.) brought humans to out-of-home experiences, and the remarkable achievements in bridging the gap between the real and digital worlds.


Toranomon Hills has continually evolved and expanded over the years, culminating in the grand opening of the Toranomon Hills Station Tower in October 2023 by Mori Building Co., Ltd. A significant part of this expansion was establishing TOKYO NODE, a creative hub housed within the Station Tower, featuring volumetric video. TOKYO NODE LAB sought to create novel experiences by fusing the architectural features of the city and its buildings with digital technologies. Its first launch included special AR content aligning with the grand opening commemorative project event, "Syn: Unfolded Horizon of Bodily Senses" exhibition by Rhizomatiks x ELEVENPLAY. Three different locations within the Toranomon Hills were chosen for this launch, alongside location-free AR content accessible from anywhere.

Objective: Bring authentic humans to digital experiences

The primary objective was to demonstrate a new and engaging experience for visitors to Toranomon Hills, bridging the real and digital worlds. The project aimed to showcase the potential of visual positioning system (VPS), volumetric video, and AR technologies, providing an immersive and creative experience for passersby.


  • Bascule Inc. (TOKYO NODE LAB): Responsible for XR project planning and development.
  • Mori Building (TOKYO NODE LAB): Property owner /developer, XR project planning
  • Arcturus Volumetric processing and post-production tools
  • SoVeC Corporation (Sony Group company): Contributed to Visual Positioning System development.


  • Perfect Integration of VPS and AR: Creating an AR mobile app that seamlessly integrated with VPS technology for both day and night use was a significant challenge.

  • Data Volume and Performance: It was crucial to minimize data volume to reduce download hesitation and work within limited mobile capacities. Handling high vertex count VPS data while smoothly playing multiple volumetric videos added to the complexity.

  • Creative Freedom: The team sought to provide a visually engaging experience by placing four volumetric video data elements simultaneously. This deviated from traditional approaches, which usually involve a single volumetric person aligned with a marker.

  • Utilization of AVV File Format: The decision to use the AVV file format, which is not common for mobile app play, presented both a challenge and an opportunity. The team successfully reduced the app's size to less than 100MB without any visual quality loss.

Achieving remarkable results

The team succeeded in creating an AR mobile app that seamlessly integrated with highly defined VPS, providing a captivating experience for day and night visitors placing volumetric video contents for an outstanding presentation. Through efficient data management and the utilization of the AVV file format, they overcame the limitations of mobile capacities and file sizes.

“Volumetric video contains mesh and texture for every frame, leading to file sizes that can exceed several gigabytes for just a few seconds of video. This makes real-time rendering even on PCs challenging. By using Arcturus latest format, 'AVV', we have managed to achieve a balance between lightweight and quality, allowing playback on smartphones. Moreover, AVV allows the playback of multiple volumetric videos and can be controlled on a timeline, greatly expanding the range of possible presentations. You can now experience volumetric videos with unprecedented high-quality presentations as a mobile app.”

Future Goals: What's next for Toranomon Hills?

The team envisions hosting music events featuring live volumetric video, combined with AR technology, to further engage and captivate audiences. This ambitious goal promises to push the boundaries of creativity and technology, establishing Toranomon Hills as a global hub for immersive and cutting-edge experiences. In summary, the innovative use of Volumetric Video at Toranomon Hills, in collaboration with partners and the successful management of challenges, has set the stage for a future of exciting possibilities in the realm of immersive experiences. This case study serves as a testament to the fusion of art, technology, and creativity.

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