- Design Team: Satoru Hayakawa
- Structure Design: Shikine Watanabe
- City: Toshima City
- Country: Japan
Concept - This house was completed from the idea that "a house that lives with human should be honest." We think that "honest architecture" is an architecture that makes it easy for its residents to feel the quality of the architecture in addition to the surrounding environment, global environment, seasons, and time. Of course, from the row of cherry blossom trees that can be seen from the window, we aimed to create a space where you can feel the time and seasons depending on how the sun shines into the building, the sense of touch, the temperature of the wall.
Site - This site of this project is located in a residential area in an urban area of Tokyo. While multiple sites are combined to construct gigantic structures due to the urban developments in the city centre, the residential lands are subdivided into smaller lots. This site is also one of the subdivided sites, and it is only about 40sqm. Standardized wooden houses are lined up on the other subdivided sites. The Kanda River flows to the south of the site, and it is easy to feel the four seasons due to the row of cherry blossom trees along the river. In addition, it is a sunny place since the buildings on the south side is distanced from the boundary and barely drops any shadows even in winter.
Composition - In order to make the space feel larger by improving the sight lines, the staircase was set up in the center of the building in a plane, and the secondary space consisting of the bathroom and laundry and the main space consisting of the living room and bedroom were arranged diagonally. Further, by arranging each space three-dimensionally, it is possible to create open sight lines in the vertical direction. On the ground floor, we created a cave like approach which features a spacious entrance. This entrance is a traditional Japanese ”doma” (dirt floor), with a height change of 30 cm to the living area where you can sit while looking out over the “tsubo-niwa” (pocket garden).
Storage drawers are installed under the floor so the small space can be used in an efficient way. The first floor features a kitchen and a living room which are visually connected to the second floor. The exquisitely located openings on the south side wall of the living room effectively captures the surrounding environment and brings natural light into the building. The second floor has a bedroom where privacy and quietness are required. A sound absorbing effect can be obtained by providing a bookshelf and storage on the entire wall surface, and the flow of light and air can be adjusted by the movable louver wall installed in the loft for the bed. When you access the rooftop through the laundry on the M2nd floor, there is a panoramic view of the surroundings, and you can comfortably dry your laundry or work while sunbathing.
Environment - In association to the suppression of the solar radiation through the buttresses and eaves, we are also concerned about reducing burden on environment by making use of the environment around the site. The air cooled by will be taken in through the opening on the river side of the ground floor. The opening on the river side on ground floor allows the air cooled by the vaporization of the river and by the shadow of the roadside trees flow into the building. Furthermore, by opening and closing the skylight installed on the roof, gravity ventilation can be promoted and the air conditioning load in summer and intermediate season can be suppressed. In winter, the leaves of the roadside trees fall and the sunlight will shine into the building.
Exterior & Structure - We installed an external buttress of the structure to solve the structural problems caused by the three-dimensional floor composition. This buttress, together with the eaves on the south outer wall, casts a shadow on the building, essentially reducing the summer solar load. In winter, the area of shadows decreased due to the altitude of the sun, and the entire south outer wall was used as a heat storage wall to reduce the energy required for heating.