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Panoramic images: Tokyo dims the lights because of nationwide electrical shortages

Two panoramic images, shot from the same spot in the Akihabara district of central Tokyo, show the usual look of the famed electronics and anime shopping area and how it has changed since the 9.0 earthquake that hit Japan on March 11. The first image, made March 19, 2011, shows most of the lights off, and only a few people are seen on the streets. Central Tokyo did not incur major damage from the earthquake, but most electric signs on commercial buildings throughout the city have been turned off in response to a nationwide shortage of electricity.

The second image, taken Nov. 19, 2010, shows a normal weekend evening in the district, with bright neon lights and people walking on sidewalks and narrow alleys lined with shops. (Shigeru Okada, VR factory / Sanke Shimbun)

See more panoramic images from the disaster in Japan.

See ongoing coverage of the disaster in Japan in PhotoBlog and in our slideshow.

Yoshikazu Tsuno / AFP - Getty Images file

City lights and billboards are turned off in Tokyo's Shibuya fashion district on March 24, 2011.