Chikuzen House / Design nico Architect Associates

© Ohno Hiroyuki

Architects: Kazuya Matsuda / Design nico Architect Associates
Location: Nomachi, Asakura, Fukuoka,
Site area: 672 sqm
Floor area: 110 sqm
Built-up area: 116 sqm
Start of planning: 2008
Completion: 2009
Photographs: Ohno Hiroyuki, Kazuya Matsuda

The site is a house built in the suburbs that offer the view of Yasu-Kogen and Mt. Ohira distantly northward. The owner only expected the space for future children and two young couples to live and gave us the opportunity of a design freely. When we visited the site, we were not able to feel an outstanding aspect except that open- northward scenery. In addition, the design started in the situation that I could not find the cozy space easily in the site while the site area is spacious 600 sqm. During the schematic planning, we located the necessary functions in a slim rectangular plan and categorized entire space as the public and private space then we came up with three boxes such as the public and private spaces and the intermediate space to tie those places.

floor plan
© Ohno Hiroyuki

We assumed the intermediate space as a kitchen, and we played to displace two boxes mutually around centrally-located kitchen, and created the opening where it was necessary in the place that the connection with outside and located the place that wanted to keep privacy from the outside in the place where it was in the blind area from the outside. As a result, we reached at the simple constitution that two lines of rectangles (two boxes) were located in the kitchen as the point of contact. In addition, I chose the gabled roof to be able to recognize from the outside that the two boxes were built by the relation that created the gap.

site plan
© Ohno Hiroyuki

Due to the space of recognizable two L-shapes that came up by the two buildings slip off, the appropriate outside place was born in the site that seems too wide compared with a building area. We think that a feeling to have new place to stay may have come by becoming a person to be target to feel a scale.

Cite: "Chikuzen House / Design nico Architect Associates" 27 Apr 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed 27 May 2015. <>
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  • arnold

    Simply, logical, quiet, moderate. Good house.

    But if the architects would allowed for me to draw some lines in this project, I would:
    1) draw more skylights for more daylight in interior spaces;
    2) not affraid to increase a bit these little windows (for more daylight);
    3) and the main thing – for exteriot I would used another material. for me the wooden outdoors were looked very good. so I’d like to do the exterior from such material; or maybe another, who would looked warmer and close to the nature and surrounding..

    The tin-plates are interesting arch.solution, but this material are used (I think) in many countries round the World. So in this place, I would looked for more original (jappan) solution.

    The house is realy good. Arigatoo gozaimasu.

  • up_today_arch

    Hi, Arnold!
    Agree with you. But it is japanise kind of life, I think, to be more intrevert, more clouse for outside. If japanese architect creates house, most of all, create them-own piece of world…, small piece of univers on small site of 50 or 100 sq.m. It is just to my oppinion. It is allways interesting to see another way of thinking and making solution for same architectural problem!…

    • arnold

      dear up_today_arch,
      that You wrote here about japanese thinking is clouse for me too.
      the solution of house architecture (projection) in many case determine the surrounding. if you need to built the building in very dense (for example Jappan) urban district, you’ll MAYBE do very “intravertic” house; but if your house will be in the large open space, so the building could be more “transparent”.

      the “japanese thinking” come out then they need to do very specific solutions to resolve specific (architectural-living) problem. so in this way often you can see the (in some case) strange “japanese architectural thinking”. my mind, if I would live in Nippon for years, maybe and I would think the same, like Japan architects do :-).

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  • Nicholas Patten

    I'd Live Here: Chikuzen House.