a+u Architecture and Urbanism Magazine

Koichiro Tokimori Osamu Kato Prof. Yanagisawa House

A house in a new residential area; still with empty lots around the property, the surrounding environment is a place that is expected to change greatly as new buildings continue to be constructed. The couple that live in this house are both professors of medicine, who wanted to have a space in which to periodically hold seminars for 50 to 60 researchers, as well as a guest room to house researchers from afar on the long term. Because of the foreseeable changes to the area, the arrangement of garden spaces was examined considering the abutting empty lots, and the house masses were broken up across the entire property, separated according to function but linked together. Gardens are inserted into openings in each building, improving lighting and ventilation; and by using the differences in elevation across the site to manipulate the floor level, it was intended for the partitioned masses blend into the scale of the houses of the surrounding environment.

The living room is about 85m2 , and its ceiling is about 5m from floor to beam. During the seminars, many people congregate in the space. There are openings of varying size inserted towards multiple directions, which serve to bring in natural light, as well as give views beyond of the sky and lush vegetation planted in the terrace. Following the property’s gently sloping terrain, the floor level of the living room was set 60 cm below the entry hall to the far left. The living room and terrace are connected on the same plane, and the second floor parapet and roof use perforated lauan plywood to reduce echo.

Ten gardens and terraces are scattered across the property, creating diverse exterior spaces. Among the gardens, there are various types, including open gardens, private gardens enclosed by the buildings or walls, bridge-shaped terraces, rooftop terraces.

Many different trees and shrubs are planted in these exterior spaces, aiming to create a private residential environment little affected by its surroundings, in the forest-like approach, floral terraces and deck terraces with maples.