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BUREAU SHINAGAWA

TOKYO, JAPAN

HOUSE

is a 24-story “service apartment,” 43.2 meters wide, 17.15 meters deep and 80.3 meters high. There are 305 rooms, and the standard floor area of a unit is 33.6 square meters. Though the units themselves are compact, the building is equipped with common baths, and athletic gymnasium, a bar and a restaurant. Balconies provide an alternative rout for evacuation in case of an emergency. The handrails on the balconies are made of glass ornamented with a traditional kimono pattern called “yorokejima”; the stripes of the pattern are colored beige, salmon pink, and green. At night, faint light from light sources installed under the windows of the units bounce off the floor of the balconies and illuminate the glass handrails. From without, the handrails are seen as horizontal bands of light in which all the colors are mixed together. From within a unit, the illumination creates the illusion that the room is larger than it actually is and extends to the handrail.

Photo: Daici Ano