This two-generation residence is located in the working-class shitamachi section of Tokyo’s Shinagawa district. The property is surrounded by old wooden homes whose lots are being subdivided as the younger generation takes them over, increasing the density of an already densely developed neighborhood. New structures must meet or exceed the codes for semi-fireproof construction, which regulate the use of wood. The client, however, wanted a home with a “natural” feeling and plenty of wood. Our first decision was to adopt a wood-frame construction method with a fireproof building skin so that we could use natural wood finishes on the interior. Next, to draw as many of the breezes that blow down the city streets as possible through the house, we maximized the number of windows in the exterior walls. Every room in the house aside from bathrooms has windows on at least two sides.
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