Steel House: A Private Residence that Resembles A Freight Car

Steel House 3

Completed in 2007 by Kengo Kuma and Associates, Steel House is a private residence located in Tokyo and designed using corrugated steel plates. Professor Hirose is the client of this project who has been a loyal fan of railroad cars since childhood. This residence resembles a freight car and it is curving into an L-shape.


Steel House 1

Steel House 2

Steel House 3

The monocoque construction of this house resembles a freight car without any columns or beams. The client also stores a few thousands of models in his home, that’s why he wants to live in a house with a freight-car environment. This house is stopping on a slope and fitting into the L-shaped site.

The railroad car’s body originally was designed based on the structure+skin idea. The structure of the division and also the skin has disappeared. The design of this house now is made based on the monocoque structure, which exists between an architecture and a railroad car.



Steel House 4

Steel House 5

Steel House 6

The basic idea of this house architectural structure is bending the plates of the steel to get more strengths. This way can help the detail of the bent’s parts to show how soft the steel material is. If the surface was to be painted and the steel plates were used without being bent, the architect could not recognize that the material used is steel.

With these abstract details, communication between the substance of steel and people doesn’t exist. By bending the steel, the details created can establish the communication between people and the steel. The architect also creates architectures from materials such as wood and stone based on the basic idea. This idea is applied by using steel, especially for the entire body of this house.


Steel House Gallery


Photographer: Mitsumasa Fujitsuka

Karin Hoover

Karin Hoover

Total posts created: 2981
“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” – Leonardo da Vinci

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