Location: Tokyo, Japan
Architects: Mizuki Imamura + Isao Shinohara
Structural Engineer: Tatsumi Terado Structural Studio
Site Area: 96.37 sqm
Building Area: 46.46 sqm
Total Floor Area: 72.14 sqm
Photographs: Takashi Suo, Courtesy of miCo., Koichi Torimura
This project is a renovation and extension of a 30 years old wooden house. We tried to see this dense neighborhood of wooden houses as a “compact cluster of the wooden frames”, which then seemed to us like an editable landscape.
The wooden frame structure made it possible to add or subtract beams and columns, setting free the renewal of the building. The wooden frame structure allows for the addition and subtraction of beams and columns to fit the composition of the family and its current purpose, letting us freely renew the house. The issues of the old wooden house were solved by altering the framework without depending on the site or the existing building. Rather than creating a brand-new view, we tried to make an aged building which changes slowly with the landscape.
The site has very narrow access to the street and is surrounded by similar houses. The neighbor on the back side of the house is currently a small field, but it will be built up in near future, which might make the site shaded and poorly ventilated.
In response to this we decided to make three small separate units. One of which is an addition and the other two were created with a division of the existing house. These gestures made the scale of building smaller and reduced tightness with the neighboring buildings. The spacing created from the separate units gave each volume an adjacent exterior, as to solve the shading and ventilation problems.
In contrast to each unit there is a connecting transparent volume, as a result the three separated units become one spacious room. However this large room is hard to imagine from the exterior of the building due to its fragmented appearance. We hope this “renewal of the wooden framework”provides some motivation to make change in dense residential landscape of the big city.