Given Japan’s tendency for tectonic activity, this weekend house was especially designed to be earthquake proof with a lightweight timber frame construction and sensible choice of materials. Hut T was intended to serve as a quiet weekend retreat and is set within a forested hillside on the edge of Lake Yamanaka, a large body of water next to Mount Fuji.
On the upper level, a translucent polycarbonate screen allows plenty of light to enter the open interior, while being a much safer alternative to glass in the event of an earthquake. The translucency also draws parallels with the paper screen walls of stereotypical Japanese houses. But a subtler idiosyncrasy of traditional Japanese architecture present is the exclusive use of horizontal and vertical elements in the timber structure’s composition — as was seen in the archery hall and boxing club by FT Architects.
The somewhat frail looking internal walls are made up of horizontal and vertical planks, which form grids that can conveniently double up as shelves. However these structures are able to support the weight of the 6m roof span, while also being particularly resistant to the lateral thrusts of potential earthquakes. The frameworks accommodate a double height ceiling for the living room area, while offering subtle distinctions between other areas of Hut T.
Want to see another quiet Japanese weekend retreat? Then check out Omizubata House by Iida Archiship Studio, or just take a look through our Japan tag for more great Japanese architecture and design.
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