contexted by Office for Environment Architecture

Experience of living in contemporary Nagaya

Project Specs


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Appreciation towards OFEA for providing the following description:


Three of the six wooden Nagaya houses built in 1926, which remain in Osaka City, have been renovated into private lodgings. All three of the existing buildings were vacant, and rain leaks and decays in various places made them look like ruins. On the other hand, the remaining three houses in a row of wooden Nagaya have been renovated and residents continue to live in each.

▼项目街景,street view of the project ©Nao TAKAHASHI


By observing the history of the multi-layered finish and the extension and renovation that overhangs the backyard side, I could read the earnest feeling of “living!” At that time. For the renovations that have been freely updated, I decided to return to the skeleton of Osaka Nagaya and insert the necessary elements. In terms of the operation of private lodging, it was required to make a difference between the three houses and to accommodate eight people in one house as a countermeasure against the hotel in a small space of about 50 m2. It was necessary to make the wall of the boundary wall a large wall with multiple layers in order to prevent fire and to prevent noise in the neighborhood. It is only anxious for the neighbors to stay in a wooden building Nagaya with thin walls every day and night, and sound measures are also the minimum etiquette.

▼项目外观,external view of the project ©Nao TAKAHASHI


In [SORA], since the bed will fit in the existing pillar module, the beam that had been badly leaked and decayed was replaced, and eight bedrooms could be secured in stages. On the first floor, there was a line of sight that went through to the courtyard like a street garden, and from the upper bedroom, the line of sight that went diagonally downward to the courtyard.

▼SORA屋室内概览,overall view of the interior space of [SORA] ©Nao TAKAHASHI

▼从一层看向庭院,vier to the courtyard from the ground floor ©Nao TAKAHASHI

▼从上层卧室看向一层,view to the ground floor from the upper bedrooms ©Nao TAKAHASHI

▼层层向上的卧室,bedrooms on stages ©Nao TAKAHASHI

▼庭院,courtyard ©Nao TAKAHASHI


In [TEN], by hollowing out the atrium diagonally and inserting the wall diagonally, light is taken in the center of the first floor where it is most difficult to secure lighting and ventilation in a deep Nagaya, and each bedroom is placed in the corner cut part.

▼TEN屋室内概览,overall view of the interior space of [TEN] ©Nao TAKAHASHI

▼从上层空间看向一层区域,vier to the ground floor from the upper space ©Nao TAKAHASHI

▼对角线布置的结构与隔墙,structure and walls arranged diagonally ©Nao TAKAHASHI

▼庭院的一角设有别室,separated room on the corner of the courtyard ©Nao TAKAHASHI


In [GEN], the part that had been added to the east side was partially reduced to create a courtyard and reconstruct the tea room that was separated.

▼GEN屋概览,overall view of [GEN] ©Nao TAKAHASHI

▼茶室,tea room ©Nao TAKAHASHI

▼卧室,bedroom ©Nao TAKAHASHI


This renovation, which was expected to be used by inbound tourists, has some aspects of temporary use of the Nagaya, but it reminded us of the conflicting elements of the skeleton of the Nagaya, which are the hardness and flexibility. With the concept of “a Nagaya where you can stay as if you live”, the number of accommodations for neighboring residents by local tourism has increased, and it also plays a role of re-evaluating the residence of Nagaya.

▼新旧结构的穿插,relationship between new and old structures ©Nao TAKAHASHI


Currently, it is said that there are about 280,000 vacant houses in Osaka city. Many Nagaya are included in it. Before the war, most of the houses in Osaka lived in Nagaya, but I hope that the usage methods will be inherited in the next era according to the social situation.

▼一层平面图,first floor plan ©OFEA

▼二层平面图,second floor plan ©OFEA

Project Name: contexted
Architecture Firm: Office for Environment Architecture
Contact e-mail:

Firm Location: OSAKA JAPAN
Completion Year (if applies): 2019
Gross Built Area: 177.66 m2
Project location: OSAKA JAPAN
photo credits: Nao TAKAHASHI
Design Team: REVearth
Clients: REVearth
Lighting design: Tokyo Lighting Design
Graphic design: Eri Nishihara

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