Townhouse in Takaban

Townhouse in Takaban

Private Houses
Tokyo, Japan - Build completed in 2014
Niji Photo

Townhouse in Takaban

Niji Architects as Architects

The two-unit three-story rental town house stands in an extremely small land of 10 tsubo (33 square meters) in the city of Tokyo. Lines derived from restrictions of North and the street gave it a gable form. The plan is divided into east and west by a s-shaped parting wall. Laid centro-symmetrically, the two units have the exact same plan. A diagonally placed parting wall and the help of high ceiling gives visitors an impression of spaciousness, masking the small floor area.


The form also helps by saving enough floor space for necessary wet areas while providing for spacious living areas. Sunlight enters through a large skylight and a wall-length window; light and shadow form different shapes following the diagonal wall and sloped ceiling. Through the play of light and shadow, the tenants experience the cycle of the day, and their life becomes something a bit more special in the softly ascending vertical space. The windows on each unit are reversed east-west from each other, allowing the direct and indirect light to create very different spaces while the plan remain the same. From this distinction, each unit gains a charming personality and allows for similar property pricing. Inside and out, the detailing gives an abstract impression of nothing but space, such that the tenant has only the pure experience of light and sky. It is hoped that each tenant from now on will also bring a bit of their own color and enjoy a little bit of special in their life.

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