Nagaya have been disappearing from downtown Tokyo for many decades, with row upon row of these "long houses" torn down to make way for more comfortable — and profitable — residential complexes and office blocks.

However, it's still possible to find examples of nagaya from the postwar era scattered around areas such as Sumida, Taito and Bunkyo wards today, and a new generation of creators are taking steps to customize them for their own purposes and give them a new lease on life.

Nagaya first appeared in Tokyo during the Edo Period (1603-1868) as a type of living quarters for the common class, with residents living side by side in the long wooden buildings.