Architects: Mejiro Studio + Kozo Kadowaki
Location: Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Structural Engineer: Konishi Structural Engineers
Contractor: Hanami Kensetsu
Area: 165.1 sqm
Photographs: Shimizu Ken
Double house being planned in the center of Tokyo. In the surrounding area, wooden houses that survived the war are scattered and low rise buildings are densely distributed. On the other hand, a project of constructing a 22m-wide loop street of Route 4 by the adjacent building on the west side of the house is underway.
The first floor space consists of small-volume units and the second floor is a unified large-volume space. They are dispersive but centripetal. The integrity of these two factors was planned for the house. This house is a proposal for a building style appropriate for the land which has two aspects, wooden house dense area and road planning.
The first floor is for the parents and the second for the child’s family. They live on different floors in different lifestyles while sharing a wash-basin and bathroom. Their living spaces have a totally different quality: The space for the parents is surrounded by the garden which brings a sense of comfort to them and the space for the child’s family is quite open to the town. The hanging walls and waist-high partition walls, which are necessarily created as a result of the intrusion of the first and second floor spaces into each other, have influences on the residents’ lives, creating a complementarity relation between the two floors.
The two-story wooden house is constructed using a conventional timber framework method. Each of the four small units of the first floor space has bearing walls on the road side and the adjacent land side and a large opening at the corner of the other two walls. Although the units cannot stand by themselves, the second floor part of the house, being on top of the first floor units, realizes the structure of the mutually-dependent first and second floor spaces.