ISSUE 63  |  Do-It-Yourself

Architect’s Visit: A Green Roof, With Wildflowers

March 12, 2013 10:00 AM

BY Julie Carlson

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A weekend house for a family of three is built on a grassy plan between the ocean and the mountains in Japan. How do you build a house that sits between the two beautiful views without blocking either? “A grassy plain was cut into and lifted up to produce an in-between space for the house,” according to Tokyo-based Hiroshi Nakamura and NAP Architects. As a result, the grassy plain became a living green roof–and playground.

Photographs via Hiroshi Nakamura and NAP Architects.

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Above: The roof slab was constructed of non-corrosive concrete and provides additional insulation to keep the house warm.

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Above: “The experience of lying down on the roof becomes equivalent to lying down on the grass ground,” according to the architects.

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Above: Seasonal changes in vegetation give the clients an opportunity to clip and shape the roof, creating a different silhouette for the house as the months progress.

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Above: The grass and soil creates a protective layer and reduces the cost of the exterior sheathing.

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Above: The interior space has “exquisite views of the ocean and the mountains, framed between wildflowers on the roof and the ground,” according to the architects.

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Above: Walls of glass and windows blur the boundaries between indoors and outdoors.

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For another of our favorite houses that blurs the boundaries between indoors and out, see Transparent Living, Japanese Style.