Project info

Location: Lake Towada, JAPAN
Area: 1,300 sq. ft 
Program: Mixed Use
Status: Completed, 2019

The site is located in the center of the town, facing the main street along the shore of Lake Towada. In the town, an increase of empty houses due to depopulation has been treated as a serious problem. Taking this situation into account, we proposed a framework where sustainable buildings are to be converted into new programs while overall numbers are to be demolished. We believe this project shows a new prototype that can suggest strategies facing shrinking society.

One of the expectations was to create a space that can accommodate flexible and varied usages, particularly functioning as a co-working office and exhibition space during week days as well as café and event space during weekends. In so doing, we generated a large studio space by dismantling the partition walls of the existing building. Our objective was to give a birth to a space that can invigorate users’ creativities through a synergistic effect, which is based upon a seamless connection among the three programs: café, co-working office, and event/exhibition.
We designed an open semi-outdoor space (doma, 土間) that faces the main street. It aims to be used for social activities, such as diverse events and exhibitions. Facing doma, we designed an area for café and office. In order to maintain connectivity between these two spaces, we inserted two L-shaped elements: between the office and event spaces (engawa, 縁側: FL+270mm) and between café and event spaces (hisashi, 庇: FL+2150mm), instead of segregating them. By doing so, we intended to introduce a comprehensive and modulated space that stimulates various kinds of creativities.