Shinkenchiku Residential Design Competition

This project was the entry submitted by Gresley Abas for the Shinkenchiku Residential Design Competition run by Shinkenchiku-sha Co. Ltd in conjunction with the Japan Architect Journal. The competition was to honour the memory of architect and educator John Hedjuk and his three by three grid (nine-square) by designing four houses in a hypothetical four by four (sixteen-square) ‘Garden City’ grid.

The brief included strict spatial requirements for the houses as well as the requirement to consider issues such as orientation, contiguity, privacy and the construction of the scheme as a whole.

Using the projects proposed grid, Hejduk’s original grid was transposed into the sixteen-square-grid field. A series of geometric steps initiated by the original transposition created a field of possible conditions: interference, interruption, intersection, rotation and overlay, allowing for the creation of the core footprint of the proposition. Point and line where drawn into a generative ‘pinwheel’ arrangement of possible dwellings.  The ghost(s) of Hejduk’s nine-square-grid emerged at points where the geometric juxtaposition of the two grids manifests.

Through the dialogue between the two principles (dis)ordering the site, an armature for the proposition was extracted. The armature defined the structural backbone for the proposition. The contiguity between the dwelling modules enabled further breakdown and the redistribution of boundaries. The proposition was able to re-present itself as a complex of 2, 4, 6 or even 8 dwellings of various sizes. The mix recognised the decreasing predominance of the nuclear family as the basis for organising the hierarchical nature of domestic space.

As a typology to be extended over a larger area, the proposition was a flexible variant with multiple possibilities.  The courtyard principle provides an inner sanctum to each cluster of dwellings distributed within the greater expanse of a ‘Garden City’.  Meanwhile: variations in the type, number and configuration of dwellings within each sixteen-square-grid cluster provide a rhythm and variance pattern within the framework of the established typology.


AxonometricStreet level perspectiveTop level perspective

Internal courtyard perspectiveEntry perspectiveInternal courtyard perspective

3 Responses

  1. Maria says:

    Thank you for opening a wonderfully new site..I wish you the best of luck with your new venture.

  2. Nezetta says:

    This is awesome !!! Good work

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