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  7. Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo

Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo

  • 01:00 - 17 June, 2010
Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo
Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo, © Matsunami Mitsutomo
© Matsunami Mitsutomo

© Matsunami Mitsutomo © Matsunami Mitsutomo © Matsunami Mitsutomo © Matsunami Mitsutomo +38

  • Architects

  • Location

    Katayama-cho, Suita-shi, Osaka, Japan
  • Architects

    Matsunami Mitsutomo
  • Number Of Apartments

    10 apartments
  • Construction area

  • Area

    1190.0 sqm
  • Project Year

  • Photographs

From the architect. As the apartment has ‘A room arrangement matching that of the window pattern’, the part that was once unavoidable has now become a large subject of the design. Taking the challenge of a small apartment within those conditions, whilst dealing with a strict budget, the Katayama apartment was born.

© Matsunami Mitsutomo
© Matsunami Mitsutomo

The Katayama Apartment is a small apartment block built on a site of 110m² and consists of 7 stories, 2 apartments per floor and a total of 10 apartments. On the north side is located the elevator, stairs and the passage with the basis being a flat plan. However, in part there is a high-ceiling maisonette covering 2 floors incorporated like stacked blocks. The layout is quite apparent when viewed from the façade of the south side. The sectional structure is reflected as it is in the outline of the façade. In other words, the lifestyle inside the apartment itself designed the façade, reflecting the intent to let the vitality of life spread out into the landscape of the homogenous rows of houses in Katayama. For the external finish a distinct black and white colour was chosen, in order to show the strong presence of a simple box against the surrounding dull buildings of beige, grey or brick shades.

© Matsunami Mitsutomo
© Matsunami Mitsutomo

In order to realise this façade design, restrictions due to the evacuation plan had to be overcome. Various patterns that would not impose on the balcony standard for emergency evacuation were considered and resulted in this design.

© Matsunami Mitsutomo
© Matsunami Mitsutomo

The variation to the cross-sectional design was brought about by the strategy of the business proprietor of ‘How can additional value be achieved’. Since supply of article for lease affair in this area meets the demand, distinction from other properties and elevated value was an absolute necessity. Since legal height restrictions permitted, a high ceiling room was integrated and, bringing together 3 plan types and finishing materials, a combination of 10 patterns was fashioned. By these means, a space offering both diversity and economic efficiency was obtained. It is these elements which makes the characteristic façade and maintains no apartment vacancies to date.

Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address. Cite: "Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo" 17 Jun 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed . <>
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BLAH CITY · May 04, 2012

Osaka: Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo | ArchDaily via @archdaily

raum|bild|welt · May 04, 2012
Tanya Delaney · May 04, 2012

Design at its finest: Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo | ArchDaily via @archdaily

drinn · May 04, 2012

Where do the residents cook? I was unable to find kitchens. Do they order food to home?

Also I am European and used to beds like the size of 120cm and larger, so I am thinking is it possible to fit those in. I don't know much about how Japaneses live. It looks like the apartments are not the best to decorate.

Some of the apartments look narrow, but an apartment with two levels, it looks large.

After all, from the architecture view the building looks very nice. Making the construction area 69.97? to have 341.38? of floor area.

Baris Ari · May 04, 2012

I have a similar -narrow and high- 5 floor project (actually narrower) but it's a 1 family house , I know it sounds strange but that was the concept.

Adam Russell · May 01, 2012

I quite like this building. Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo #slendernessratio

waitingkate · September 12, 2011

Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo | ArchDaily ? ??????? @archdaily

Erica Riva · March 30, 2011

Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo _ #architecture #photography

?????? · March 09, 2011

??????????????Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo | ArchDaily via @archdaily

yu wang · March 08, 2011

Interesting box,i like!

RENarch · February 15, 2011

Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo | ArchDaily via @archdaily

Valerie Sacks · February 05, 2011

An interesting concept but I REALLY feel sorry for their neighbors. Does not exactly fit into the surroundings, hello!

nulla · January 23, 2011

Nothing wrong with them, it`s just about money. Money rules the world, am I wrong?
All in all a good project in my opinion.

Pere Serra · November 09, 2010

Boon dia!! Cercant la inspiració.. Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo | ArchDaily:

JitM · October 11, 2010

I had suspected way back, so had also asked sometime back --don't the Japanese start families? But now I already know. I am not groping in the dark anymore. I have seen the light. It's out in the open. The Japanese don't start families. Just like white men don't rap. No no, I am not at all making fun. The Jap are a sensible people. They know that if they start any more families, they will have to start building underground cities and floating islands. After just a minute of glancing at the floor plan I realize that, had each apartment been allowed to be double-height, each one could have easily been cool hipster two bedroom apartments -- with attached bathrooms, a sitting/dining space, and a small storeroom to spare -- in a cool hipster tower -- all within that strict budget.
But no -- you got to prove that youre Japanese. So squeeze in TWO "apartments" on each level, and place the commode right opposite the kitchen counter (to dump in turn that way, to dump out turn 180). and of course, the usual interior -- stairs must look like they were made of paper (origami?) or matchsticks, and yes there are only 3-4 colors in the world that your are allowed to use by law -- beige, white and black.
What an ostentatious and pretentious misuse of space and what a dissapointment after that hip exterior.
What in the-land-of-the-rising-sun is W-R-R-O-N-G with some of Japan's architects???

cherryfeast · July 17, 2010

?- *o* ?? ?? ???. ?? ?????! RT @studio_mmer: ???? ????? 111,881?. ????? ???????.

studio_mmer · July 17, 2010 ???? ????? 111,881?. ????? ???????.

steve rio · July 16, 2010

Wild apartment building in Katayama:

Fernando Almada · July 06, 2010

Sou facinado pela arquitetura japonesa contemporania: Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo -

REHA GERÇEK · June 28, 2010

Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo | ArchDaily:

Pedro Valloz · June 23, 2010

Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo | ArchDaily

Juan · June 21, 2010

where's the furniture, please don't forget the scales ¡¡¡¡

The Big Black &amp; White Zebr · June 21, 2010 09:13 PM

You have to wait till people move in Jaun...
Usted tiene que esperar hasta que los gente llegan. Jaun...

julian vallejo · June 21, 2010

Reading: "Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo | ArchDaily"( )

arnold · June 20, 2010

excellent exterior solution. very nice and good Idea. Big Respect.

toni poikeljärvi · June 20, 2010

#architecture Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo | ArchDaily

Michael Baugus · June 19, 2010

Another interesting facade by Mitsumoto- Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo | ArchDaily

Apartments Rented · June 18, 2010

Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo | ArchDaily

Kitory · June 18, 2010

RT @nicholaspatten: Apartment in Katayama.

Nicholas Patten · June 18, 2010

Apartment in Katayama.

æon · June 18, 2010

And think that the divisions of the facade is something to remark.

António R. da Silva · June 18, 2010

Apartamento em Katayama Mitsutomo Matsunami / | archdaily

xondx · June 18, 2010

hmmm...reminds me of Donald Judd!

Eili · June 17, 2010

I do love industrial stairs and the concrete inside - nevertheless im not sure if its comfy & "warm" enough at long sight, as the walls are so narrow.
to me, concrete walls like this need room to have the chance to sink in, otherwise they are kind of cold and depressing..

The Big Black &amp; White Zebr · June 18, 2010 12:41 AM

I'm not sure concrete needs anything else... it doesn't need time to be accepted. We should be careful not to judge by our own preconceptions, though you are welcome to do so... I think the space is near generous by Japanese standards and the warmth, in the sense of homely comfort, comes from the space. Why should a living space be warm, and is that acheived only through the obvious tools of material and colour. I made a referance to the Barbican in London - UK. These are luxury apartments and many have a width of only 3.3 meters... a lot of the warmth to these apartments will come from the life that people bring with them...

The Big Black &amp; White Zrbr · June 17, 2010

Fabulous design... always nice to see when fashioned from a standard building - strong facade. The invention and especially the distribution of materials is interesting. Will the residents spoil it? Begs the question about where the architect draws the line in speculative housing... here there is less opportunity for the owners to express their individuality on the fabric of the building than in most places - that is without changing the overall conception. Interestingly the interiors are more or less the private realm and very few of us after this post will ever see this project again in its totality. Even if you live there how many neighbour's apartments will you see... reminds me of Chamberlain Powell & Bon in the UK, at the Golden Lane Estate more than the Barbican, for wit of change - Bravo...

magro · June 17, 2010

i like the design, but the plans could be a lot better.

drew · June 17, 2010

amazing concrete work! then again typical japanese design has this quality of craftsmanship when it comes to concrete.

i agree its a bit narrow, and at the same time its out of scale with its context.

Ke · June 17, 2010

It looks very cool and clean, but I still doubt if it is convenient to use. Most units looks a little bit too narrow.

Well, it is built in Japan, maybe residents there already get used to this scale.

FELIPE GOES · June 18, 2010 07:05 PM


tim · June 17, 2010 10:04 PM

they´re used to sleep in boxes !!! :D


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Apartment in Katayama / Matsunami Mitsutomo