- Contractor: Kai Kensetsu
- Total Floor Area: 411.20 m²
- Site Area: 673.45 m²
- Build Area: 175.20 m²
- Architect In Charge: Tomohiko Iida, Hidetoshi Sawa, Norifumi Watanabe
- City: Fukuoka
- Country: Japan
Text description provided by the architects. Fukuoka is a unique and vibrant city with a population of 1.5 million and is continuing to grow. The building site is located in a residential area and is three train stations away from the city-center, an area that is currently building 10-story high residences. The landlord requested the design and building of a rental complex in one section of a 3,000 m²site. A small hill opens toward the east; this has been a living area for a long time as ancient dwellings have been excavated here.
The landlord has a dream of watching the site grow into a lush and leafy place in which to live. The plan is to nurture the greenery gradually in the next decades, so that a rich natural environment will surround this residence and this landscape will still be enjoyed even in the year 2050. The nearby apartments have been built based upon previous approaches to design and appear to be less comfortable buildings in which to live. To change the current economic, cultural, social and even family structures may seem impossible, but perhaps all that is needed is a very simple idea: “It’s comfortable to live, experiencing nature every day.”
The rental apartment complex is a low-rise building where greenery can be experienced from any room. It is a reinforced concrete structure, 3 stories in height with 2 units on each floor, 6 units in total.
Firstly, distinctive trees are planted at the four corners of the site; this is the best part of site for sunlight and scenery. Sakura is visible even from a distance, and the view will be a highlight of the site. Cornus florida keeps out the late afternoon sun, and blooms pink flowers that provide a colorful springtime. A maple that changes with the four seasons will enhance the entrance approach. Zelkova will grow up large enough to enshrine the building.
The building weaves between the trees, and the kitchen, bath and toilet are allocated beside the stairs, making a service core. All rooms are situated between two gardens, enabling the inhabitants to see trees on either side. The building is segmented into two masses. Towards the top of each, the building is chamfered to provide space for the growing branches of the trees.
This small yet diverse ecosystem, after time and nurturing, will become a deeply rooted forest. This architecture stands as if one with nature. The architecture and forest come together, and people's lives are nestled in the trees. Sharing a rich green space together will enhance the richness of living.