22-10-2007

Kengo Kuma, Chokkura Plaza, Takanezawa, Japan, 2006

Kengo Kuma,

Glass, Stone,

Kengo Kuma's Chokkura Plaza is close to Hoshakuji station, two stops after Utsunomiya.



Kengo Kuma, Chokkura Plaza, Takanezawa, Japan, 2006 At the western exit there is a rotunda, while the eastern exit is closed-off and there is an abandoned rice warehouse made of Ooya stone. Rather than designing a modern station made of glass, aluminium and new materials, Kengo Kuma attempts to design a building that will create a new image for the city without betraying the image of the stone warehouse.
Ooya stone is unique and has all the softness of soil. The softest, brownest part of the stone, known as "miso", is the product of soil remaining inside the stone. It is a particularly porous stone because it is full of holes.
To come up with an advanced technique for using this material, Kengo Kuma and a team of engineers researched a diagonal form of construction consisting of a steel basket attached to a rod of the same material. This ensured that stone would not be simply a cladding material but contribute to creation of the building's structural skeleton.

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