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House in Kohoku, Yokohama, Japan

Friday 28 Nov 2008

Let the sun shine in

copyright: Torafu Architects, photos: Daici Ano 
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Yokohama house floods in natural light against the odds 

This site is located in a quiet residential region, reclaimed on a hill of Yokohama. With neighbouring houses lined very close together, this flag-shaped site meets a road at a verge of no more than 3 metres in width. Since the site is tilted to the north, and the neighbouring two-storey house to the south is built on higher ground, at first it seemed almost impossible to let in light from the south, although the client, a married couple who has lived in this place for a long time, wanted a small house with lots of sunlight consisting of one storey just as their child became independent from them.

The roof, which looks as if barnacled, lets in light through the glass on the top of the tube-shaped windows that are set avoiding shades and the gaze of the neighbours. On the inside of the house clearly appear the shapes of these “tubes,” and the arris of a kind of folded plate roof softly separate the whole residential space. The house being single storey, the architects were able to form the roof with freedom. And taking advantage of the freedom, we aimed to make the exterior and the interior appear as two sides of the same object.

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