La Cienega West

Nagano
Photo © Hiroshi Ueda
Photo © Hiroshi Ueda
Photo © Hiroshi Ueda
Photo © Hiroshi Ueda
Photo © Hiroshi Ueda
Photo © Hiroshi Ueda
Architects
Katsuhiko Endo Architect and Associates
Location
Nagano
Year
2011

This project is for an apparel retail building in Matsumoto, Nagano. The site is located midway between Matsumoto Station and Matsumoto Castle, looking over the Metoba River towards the south.

This is two a two-story building with a steel frame and designed as a simple box shape with openings in the upright and inverse triangular pyramids cut from it. This was planned based on the construction method of “using pin junctions at the vertexes of a steel frame structure with rigid-joined triangular pyramid shapes, to withstand earthquake forces”, which we proposed in our draft proposal for the Kashiwazaki City Hall (finalist). The walls bent into triangles that make up each face are structurally deemed to be triangular pyramid frames with a truss structure that are joined at the top and bottom, and they serve as an earthquake resistant element that works both horizontally and vertically.

An extremely important design factor for any apparel retail buildings is to prevent the merchandise from direct sunlight. While shops want to use glass openings to open themselves up to the street, there are not many ways to solve the fading problem effectively.

In this plan, we designed glass openings only in the faces that have the triangular pyramid sections and planned the glass to face north in the upper part of the space and to face directions where sunlight will not enter at foot level. As the result, we have designed enough openings to light the interior of the room while preventing direct sunlight on the merchandise. The glass openings also effectively lead passersby to the shop.

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