Location: Setagaya, Tokyo, Japan
Area: 71.5 sqm
Project Year: 2011
Photographs: Sadao Hotta
From the architect. This is a renovation project of a room of an apartment for a married couple and their four children. Under the condition of approximately only 70 square meters for a room, we thought it was impossible to divide the common space and the individual rooms. Then we took off the walls of 2DK room, and make it one big room at first. Then we put two "boxes" covered by wood and blue felt in the room diagonally. On the top of the "boxes", the ceiling height is only 1.1m; however it is enough for children to use. The ceiling height of the room is 2.4m and parents always can feel their children's presence.
Under the blue "box", there is a bed for the couple and the youngest child. And top of the box, there are desks around it which is multipurpose space for the children to play, read or draw. Under the bed, there is a storage space which they can put their things they usually don't use. The box is connected by the small stairs from living room, and adult has to crouch to go up because of its height, but children can go up normally. The wooden "box" is made for bets, desks and benches for the older three children and is an only private space for them.
To go up to the benches on the box, you have to put your feet on the small shelf on the wall, and your hand on the wall. The children can use the light on the upper part of the front wall without leaking light around when they read books on the beds, or study on the box. There is a shelf for their backpacks or textbooks in the back upper part, and they can take them by extending their hand from the bench. You can see the children sitting on the bench when you enter. You can walk around the "boxes", and there are kitchen and storage space placed on each faces. The "boxes" have some holes on its wall and they become peepholes you can look through, stairs to go up, and bench like a bay window. The "boxes" creates various activities in the room and it's like a set of the stage.
Text provided by mihadesign.