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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.

FLAMINGO in Koenji, Japan by N Maeda Atelier

 
June 24th, 2013 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: Norisada Maeda

FLAMINGO is a pair of small architectures each only having a built area of 20 m2, rising in a boisterous city environment between a national highway and an elevated railway. A small building plot means that the interests regarding the space are inevitably drawn up vertically, that is, toward the cross-sectional design.

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

  • Architects: N Maeda Atelier
  • Project: FLAMINGO
  • Location: Koenji, Tokyo, Japan
  • Design: N MAEDA ATELIER-Norisada Maeda
  • Project team: principal-in-charge-Kenichi Murakami, Yoshinori Shibata, Hiroshi Matsuzaki
  • Design: 1999~2000
  • Construction: 2000
  • Structual system: Reinforced concrete 3stories

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Major materials

  • Exterior: exposed concrete
  • Interior: exposed concrete
  • Maximum height: 11.370mm
  • Consultants: Hirokazu In,  structural
  • Site area: 25.76 m2(towerA)+25.76m2(towerB)
  • Built area: 18.28 m2(towerA)+20.32m2(towerB)
  • Total floor area: 51.47 m2(towerA)+54.90m2(towerB)

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

The “rules” here is a configuration using a “cross-sectional C-shape” frame. Making “cross-sectional C-shape” frames which differ slightly in the vertical direction to face one another generates not only the floors to serve as living space, but also generates openings and vaulted ceilings. Such architectural components are not intentionally created, rather, they naturally arise from setting the “rules”.  For example, all openings except for the two escape openings are generated purely from these “rules”.

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Also, due to the extraordinarily small floor area, “passing points” such as the stairwell are also used as the bath, lavatory, study, and so forth. Such a program should be a viable option in areas where land prices are prohibitively high, such as Tokyo. Instead of conceiving the size and shapes of rooms according to how they will be used, and then working out the puzzle of how to realize them, this method for room layout first sets the “rules”, and then later decides which space will become which room, with no more than “it just happens to look right”. This allows the actions of the dweller to be freer from the program laid down by the architect. While FLAMINGO may be astonishingly small, its naked frame appears to be standing tall and unyielding in the throes of the surrounding urban ugliness.

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

Image Courtesy © N Maeda Atelier

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