The Omiyamae Gymnasium is a welcome green space within the dense residential neighborhood of Suginami, Tokyo that provides a perfect secluded spot to workout and swim, away from the busy metropolis. Jun Aoki has hidden most of the multi story gymnasium underground, so the buildings appears as simple elliptical one story volumes within a park area of lawns and gingko trees. The project also features accessible green roofs that add to the available community space.
Contemporary Japanese architect Jun Aoki worked in the office of Arata Isozaki alongside Pritzker prize winner Shigeru Ban and is known for visually arresting structures such as his stores for Louis Vuitton. In context of suburban Tokyo he demonstrates why the ability to blend in can be as impressive as the ability to stand out. The gymnasium’s low-rise structure successfully maintains continuity and flow with the residential buildings in the surrounding streets.
The main building’s green roof is accessible and offers a peaceful space for relaxing outside after a workout. Solar panels sit atop the smaller structure to send renewable energy to the spaces below and offset the energy requirements of the racket courts and swimming pool.
Clever landscape design includes bushes planted to shield the panels and reduce their visual footprint. The simple concrete and glass design allows plenty of natural daylight to reach the levels below ground. Here raw concrete and wooden surfaces add to the calm and rejuvenating atmosphere. The Omiyamae Gymnasium is a true oasis for city dwellers.
Image Copyright Maria Novozhilova