Frame House by Apollo Architects & Associates

Wood, concrete and a large glass opening create subtle and pleasing gradations of shadows on the floors, walls, and ceilings of the Frame House by Apollo Architects & Associates.

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“For Frame, a low cost and short construction period were realized by substituting regular wooden frameworks for exposed concrete with FRP (fiber-reinforced plastic) that can be converted.

This house, with a studio for a husband who is a fashion photographer, is located in an area with flooding risks from torrential rains. Therefore, the entrance level is raised by 800 mm. The studio level on the first floor is lowered to maintain the ceiling height.

The facade with characteristic one-sheet glass uses reinforced concrete with randomly allocated FRP frameworks. Water-resistant itauba wood is used for the walls and the back of the eaves as decoration, resulting in creating a perfect contrast of wood and concrete.

By using teak wood for the second floor ceiling, which is visible behind the sash, a sense of unity with the exterior is strengthened. The interior also uses teak wood for flooring, furniture, and fixtures. Light from the large opening creates beautiful gradations of shadows on the floors, walls, and ceilings. The free-room on the third floor, which will be a children’s room in the future, has an almost same-sized outer living room. A table set or a pool can be placed there to accommodate many people for parties.

The interior walls are highly insulated with a 60mm heat insulator, and the roof uses a frame-waterproof material, resulting in it being functional while cutting costs. Framework workers did multiple tasks to reduce the total number of workers involved, and this lead to streamlining and a short construction period. In Japan, where recovery from the earthquake and preparation for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics are accelerating, construction costs are rising due to shortage of workforce and materials. Therefore, demands for such low-cost RC structures may increase.

PROJECT DATA Location: Nakano ward Tokyo Date of Completion: June 2014 Principal Use: Private housing Structure: RC Site Area: 72.91m2 Total Floor Area: 142.17m2 (55.56m2/1F, 57.74m2/2F, 28.87m2/3F) Design Period: June 2012 – September 2013 Construction Period: October 2013 – June 2014 Structural Engineer: Design Center Mechanical Engineer: Naoki Matsumoto Lighting design: SIRIUS LIGHTING OFFICE” Photos by Masao Nishikawa.

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