CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

Japanese studio APOLLO Architects have created CADRE, an innovative residential house in the town of Uonuma in Niigata, Japan well known for its proximity to the area where the Great Chuetsu Earthquake struck in 2007. Along side earthquakes, the area receives some of the heaviest snowfall in Japan, with buildup of two to three meters high, a challenge APOLLO overcame by raising the ground floor level to that of a second story building, accommodating the winter weather.

CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

©Masao Nishikawa

The building was designed for a married couple whilst its design is enhanced by the conditions of the site.  The house features a reinforced concrete exterior allowing the structure to withstand large earthquakes, a wide spaced pilotis forms shelter generous enough for four cars in addition to incorporating an entrance and storage space for machinery and equipment that should not be obstructed by snow.

CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

©Masao Nishikawa

CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

©Masao Nishikawa

The whole house is only 99 square meters, and is formed of a small lobby and a singular second story room. The upper level surrounds a central courtyard allowing natural light to flow into the building through windows that frame the local setting, offering the inhabitants a constant connection with the adjacent environment, from the comfort of their home.

CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

©Masao Nishikawa

CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

©Masao Nishikawa

A singular spiral staircase connects the harsh exterior conditions to the inhabited space. The interior itself presents a strong minimalist aesthetic as well as spatial organization.

CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

©Masao Nishikawa

  APOLLO Architects & Associates crafted a single room divided with the dwellings amenities, while the kitchen and bathroom separate the living and bedroom areas, all of which are connected by the same material pallet. The residence integrates the rawness of exposed concrete, the simplicity of stark white walls and dark walnut flooring creating an understated yet powerful ambiance enhanced by the large and generous windows that consume the building.

CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

©Masao Nishikawa

CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

©Masao Nishikawa

CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

©Masao Nishikawa

The abundance of natural light and carefully selected materials allows the building to surpass its practical values, becoming much more than a ‘safe’ structure. It becomes a statement sculpture, a beacon for extreme conditions architecture.

CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

©Masao Nishikawa

CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

©Masao Nishikawa

CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

©Masao Nishikawa

CADRE by APOLLO Architects & Associates

Words: Jessica MacNally

 


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