When facing harsh climatic conditions, an architectural strategy that would effectively insulate and adapt a building to the severe winter but simultaneously minimize heat gain during the summer is necessary. On this basis, Sapporo-based studio archiLAB designed CYIN, an elevated house that adapts to the seasons.
Located in the inland town of Asahikawa in Hokkaido prefecture, Japan where there is a dramatic 40 degree temperature difference between the summer and the winter months, CYIN is raised on V-shaped stilts protecting it from the cold soil, humidity and the accumulation of snow. An upper volume rests lightly over a small ground floor and entrance, creating a garden space for use in warmer months.
CYIN’s interior follows an open-plan layout with a large living area at the core of the house with two bedrooms and utilities room branched off. Wooden partitions with sliding doors define the limits between rooms, while storage cabinets are made from matching timber; giving the house a warm, cozy feel.
Through the use of architectural expression expressed by the support from the stilts and the open-plan layout, CYIN instills a sense of ‘lightness’
The house features a large window to the south and a balcony to the north. These are strategically positioned to maximise ventilation and natural light, while avoiding direct sunlight from the east and west to maintain a cool temperature in summer.
Photography is by Kei Furuse.