Warehouse Villa in Isumi / Arii Irie Architects
Text description provided by the architects. The seemingly odd title, Warehouse Villa, arose from an unusual request received from an owner of a restaurant business. He was looking for a warehouse to store furniture and cooking appliances that he inherited from his family business. At the same time, he was looking forward to using the warehouse, making it preferably a bit bigger than necessary, as a vacation house for his family and friends.
The site is located in Isumi, a town on the eastern edge of the Boso Peninsula facing the Pacific Ocean. Surrounding the site is a low-density half-farm, half-residential area with rich peripheral trees which provide protection from the strong wind from the ocean. The ocean breeze is an aspect that characterizes the area, cooler in the summer than in nearby Tokyo.
Since what was to be stored inside was not delicate in terms of temperature and humidity, the warehouse basically required a shelter for protection from rain and wind. The concept was to enlarge this primitive shelter as much as possible; to make a piece of architecture purely from an outer skin.
The skin consists of a 0.5-millimeter-thick corrugated metal sheet, and corrugated polycarbonate with the same profile. No glass or manufactured sashes are used, all windows and doors were custom-made. Together with the large sliding doors and the horizontal and vertical swinging doors designed to reflect natural light while open, are a set of mosquito net curtains which can be closed via Velcro.
Inside this spacious outer skin, a tent or even an additional shed can be set up if necessary. The aim was to create a naturally changing wholesome atmosphere where the inhabitants respond to the environment, finding joy in spending time close to nature.