Most university campus buildings appear to be hard and cold, with brick, concrete, metal and stone used to create their facades. Kengo Kuma wanted to break away from that and make a building that felt soft and warm, so they decided to use hundreds of thin wood strips to cover a University of Tokyo computing facility. The result is a building with a soft, natural exterior that appears to be alive .
Daiwa Ubiquitous Computing Research Building houses advanced computing studies that seek to explore how humans could becoming permanently wired together via an online network. So to match the innovation taking place inside the building, Kengo Kuma created an entirely unique look for the building’s three-story exterior. The building also utilizes ground-breaking technology with hundreds of sensors to monitor and regulate the interior environment.
The strips of cedar planks are arranged across the entire building like feathers or scales in groups of five or ten, and then staggered diagonally. “Here, scale-like panels of natural materials gently undulate to form a smooth and organic facade,” the firm said.
An opening at the base of the building creates a cave-like frame for the park beyond the structure. “The opening generates a gentle and organic flow of light and wind in the campus, which is otherwise dominated by the strict grid arrangement,” said the firm.
Images via SS Tokyo