The Hongodai Christ Church School & Nursery is a complex of church school (2nd floor) and nursery (1st floor) administered by Protestant Christ church. The premises are located at a greenery area in Yokohama city surrounded by fields, parks and hills in the neighborhood. It has been planned in the open space such that places for children to stay are mixed into forest with rich natural environment.
Architect: Takeshi Hosaka Architects
Location: Yokohama, Japan
Structural Engineer: Ove Arup & Partners Japan Ltd / Hitoshi Yonamine
Project Area: site 1,332.92 sqm, building area 265.97 sqm, total floor area 531.94
Project Year: 2010
Photographs: Masao Nishikawa
This school is a mixture of indoor and outdoor environments. Takeshi Hosaka Architects selected wooden construction as the ideal for children from infant to senior in high school to stay. In a simple grid building, steel frames are adopted to five courtyards to bear earthquake load. Since pillars of solid steel are fit between wooden pillar and sash, their existence is successfully eliminated without any sense of discomfort while they are exposed without being hidden.
A glass sliding door is equipped at the interface between indoor and outdoor area. Light falls and spreads into the building through the trees and winds from the forest run through the building. It is possible for children to spend their time both at indoor space where they feel as if they were in the forest and at outdoor area where they also feel as if they belong to the building. School children go to each classroom after holding morning service in the hall at second floor. They take classes in sunlight falling through the trees and read books in the forest. Children in nursery freely run around from indoor to outdoor while taking a nap with comfort brought by forest wind.
The building has been built by trying to figure out a new concept for building establishments in forests.