This urban residence is located in a commercial district, not so far from the city Shinjuku, where it still has the mood of old town. The plot is narrow on the street side and deep on the other, just like an “eel’s bed”. Natural lighting would be collected from the front side or the above with its condition. The façade of this project is composed of large openings arranged in a regular grid.

The client – a husband who works for an advertisement company and wife who works for a furniture store – is an active DINKS (double-income, no kids) couple. The gallery on the first floor opens to the busy street with glazed storefront.  Even though the house is compact, it can generate income when also used as a shop and by including a space for people to gather, it attains a public character.  It is an urban residence which can offer a life style of the future.

For wife’s photography hobby, dark room is placed on the first floor, along with the study space for husband on the same floor.  The color “blue” which is their favorite color, are used as an accent color on the second floor. The open room adjacent to the stairwell with Tatami-mat flooring also functions as reception room for the guests. The “semi-spiral stair”, combination with u-shaped stair and the spiral stair, leads all the way to the roof terrace.

Third floor is arranged with one open space with double height ceiling. It allows the lights to fall-in and the views to pass-through in the family room.  This dynamic method applied to dwelling, sensing the commercial neighborhood, leads to another step of originating the small housing within the environment.


Location Nakano ward Tokyo
Completion 2013.01
Site area 45.19㎡
Building area 34.59㎡
1F floor area 31.09㎡
2F floor area 34.59㎡
3F floor area 34.59㎡
PH floor area 3.95㎡
Total floor area 105.03㎡
Structure Steel
Scale 3F
Typology Private housing + Retail
Structures Masaki Structures
Kneta Masaki
Facility engineers Shimada Architects
Zenei Shimada
Construction Ido Construction
Photographer Masao Nishikawa
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