A Courtyard House by Arakawa Architects & Associates
“The Project site is located in an older residential area where the wife was born and grew up in. The front street is small but very busy, also the site is surrounded by 5 other buildings.
The house is designed for single family of five people ( 2 adults and 3 children ). In an effort to keep privacy and connectivity between inside / outside at same time, we decided to make an enclosed courtyard which is open to the sky. Then we carefully placed the required rooms in the program around the courtyard in order for the family to be able to feel the seasons and whether through the courtyard from inside. The Inside rooms are also connected to each other to create an interior space to read as one large volume. By utilizing multiple floor levels and manipulating the flow of walking paths throughout the house, a hierarchy has been created that allows for the large volume to have a distinct character in different areas, which we think is very important for a home.
The garage is located directly adjacent to the courtyard with big sliding doors. When the cars are out of the space, this garage can be transformed into an extension of the courtyard. This layout of 3 spaces ( dining / kitchen, courtyard & garage ) offer multiple opportunities for the family to enjoy the house.
The unique facade is designed with combination of primitive shapes and traditional materials. ” New but familiar ” There are few very old houses using the same material in this neighborhood. We believe utilizing new shapes and forms while cladding them with traditional materials is a fresh and suitable idea for the client who is building a new family in an area where she shares great history. This strategy to manage the old and the new honors both of the periods and brings them together in a successful way that we believe to be harmonious for this project and this family.”
Photos by: Arakawa Architects & Associates & Daisuke Nakamura