When the Chairman of a local shopping street and his son decided it was time to tear down their old building, they didn’t want just another condo in its place. They wanted something that would interact with the local community and stimulate what they called the “small economy.” Working together with architects Toshiharu Naka and Yuri Uno, the team came up with an apartment with a built-in cafeteria on the ground level that would also serve as a restaurant.
Earlier this year in March, once construction was complete, the new venture opened for business.
The building consists of five SOHO units, a small restaurant and a shared office space. The SOHO units are connected to the common hallway accessed via a multipurpose space called a studio. The small restaurant is open to both the town and people of the apartment, which is run by a cook and any local residents who love cooking.
The new building expands on the concept of a “sharing economy” and rethinks the typical function of an apartment not only as shelter but also as a business. The restaurant, aptly titled “Ties,” is located a walk away from Musashikoyama Station. It’s a unique idea that could catch on more and more people crave offline interactions.
The apartment and cafeteria were the recent recipient of a 2014 Good Design Award.