In this renovation project Schemata Architects have refurbished an apartment block that was built in the post war period of high economic growth in Japan.
The building was originally designed to provide 30 residential rooms using a housing module called ‘nLDK’, an efficient system widely used in Japan. The architects, headed by Jo Nagasaka, partially stripped the flats back to their concrete shell, altering selected elements such as windows, doorways and partitions while leaving some parts such as the kitchen units untouched.
"Sayama Flat is a renovation project of a 29-year-old apartment building, and it was completed January, 2008," explains Nagasaka. "Sayama, the suburb 1 hour from the central of Tokyo by train, is an old residential area. There are a lot of small housings around our site.
"In general, Japanese renovation projects are started from removing every old interior and then redesigned it. However, in this project we started to choose what is necessary and what is not from an existing interior space. Because of remaining some of the elements of the interior, we achieved to design a neutral space that motivates young people to create their own life-style."