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Reinterpreting Nature in Design: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus

Photo Credit: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site. Photographer: Katsuhisa-Kida/FOTOTECA

Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site (Hiroki Hasegawa), Tokyo, Japan There is a certain type of landscape where people just feel good, without realizing the reason for that. Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus is undoubtedly one of those exceptional places. A place which has something more to offer. A feeling, a sensation, a perfect harmony. The secret to achieving such an effect is partly revealed in the philosophy of Studio On Site. “Although our work covers a wide range, we always emphasize the “experience of a place” and consider how a given activity will come to be positioned in society and on the specific site. We believe that landscape design is not due to the structure of the new form but a given activity always has something to do with the change in shape or appearance of what is already on the site”, says the team that designed Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus. They certainly didn’t forget to follow this ultimate belief within this project!

Photo Credit: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site. Photographer: Katsuhisa-Kida/FOTOTECA

Photo Credit: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site. Photographer: Katsuhisa-Kida/FOTOTECA

Representing Nature in Design

The major concept of the landscape design is inspired by something simple, and yet genius. You can see it. You can touch it. It is all around you –Nature. The reinterpretation of nature in Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus is achieved through a repeated square-shaped pattern. The scattering of black pavement covers both interior and exterior floors. The concept of this dispersion is to represent the sunshine filtering through foliage. Thus instilling visitors with a pleasurable sensation or one of a kind experience of the site.

Photo Credit: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site.

Photo Credit: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site.

Design and Function Symbiosis When Representing Nature in Design

Besides the creative and aesthetic functions of the flooring, the paving also performs a directing role. This pavement pattern is a “marker” which shows where to stay in the campus. Conversely, the road zones without that motif are intended mainly for pedestrian circulation. The flooring pattern also varies vertically and horizontally by each sample unit. This difference in levels suggests diversity of uses and activities. A must-have in such a great example of public space.

Photo Credit: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site. Photographer: Katsuhisa-Kida/FOTOTECA

Photo Credit: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site. Photographer: Katsuhisa-Kida/FOTOTECA

The pavement motif is spread all around the campus, but accented mainly in the front plaza. Black and white granite paving stones are contrasted with wood deck. Once more, those three materials differentiate the various levels and uses. In this way the site is ready to welcome you or your group of friends. Whether spending time there alone or chatting and resting with friends, users of the campus will sense this peculiar atmosphere. The fine leaves of the Zelkova trees casting shadows and playing games with the sunshine. Related Articles:

Photo Credit: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site.

Photo Credit: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site.

Taking Full Advantage of the Space Parallel to the idea of creating an open public space arises the thought of making the most of the site. Instead of being divided into several structures, the campus is set into one huge building. The aim of the landscape project is to entirely improve  the area surrounding the building through reinterpreting nature in design. Besides that amazing transformation, improvements are done via two other methods — through the formation of an inner yard and roof garden. An excellent illustration of taking full advantage of the space. A Pivot Point for University Students As Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus is beyond question a delightful site, it also appears to be a focal point for students from different universities. It provides them with a relaxing atmosphere especially when having breaks between classes. Instead of travelling to go back home, students have the opportunity to study, have a meal or just take a rest on this beautiful campus. All without wasting any of their precious time.
Photo Credit: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site. Photographer: Katsuhisa-Kida/FOTOTECA

Photo Credit: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site. Photographer: Katsuhisa-Kida/FOTOTECA

Social Engagement and Interaction The design fosters social engagement, encouraging students to meet new people. Not only university students but people coming from the neighboring park. They can share new ideas or make new friends. Meeting future colleagues is possible, too. So, instead of just killing time by going somewhere else, students have a wonderful opportunity to socialise within a beautiful campus that reinterprets nature in design. The opportunity for networking which later becomes essential for career success. All this you can find in one single spot. Isn’t that the desired experience of the place? “We follow this line of thought on every single project, too, encouraging all of our team to always consider in their daily works what they hope a given action will make happen and what experience can be achieved only in that particular place”, says the team of Studio On Site.
Photo Credit: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site. Photographer: Katsuhisa-Kida/FOTOTECA

Photo Credit: Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus, by Studio on Site. Photographer: Katsuhisa-Kida/FOTOTECA

Teikyo Heisei University Nakano Campus successfully displays how a brilliant project works. Resulting in pleasant surroundings where people sense ease and delight through all the interactions with their environment. A good project succeeds when it makes ordinary people feel extraordinarily good. In this particular case, this is achieved due to the intelligent way of taking people back to nature by reinterpreting nature in design. And since imitation doesn’t work, reinterpretation here has done wonders. Recommended Reading:

Article by Velislava Valcheva Return to Homepage

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