cheese & meat factory

A factory for cheese making and meat processing.

The idea was to build a factory for cheese from local dairy cows and a meat processing on the site of a demolished car park of a former department stores', and to incorporate an antenna shop and a center for food education in the factory, where events can be held and visitors can relax.

The client, who also imports and exports, asked us if we could use second-hand sea containers.
In this area there are many farms and suburbs where sea containers are used as warehouses, often with silver buildings and faded containers in the greenery. I was somehow convinced that this was a very impressive "Japanese countryside" scene, and containers were in fact a very everyday material.

Therefore, in order to control the future expansion and the environment of the factory, such as lighting, heat, ventilation, etc., we used the sea container as one of the modules of the architecture, and by manipulating the gaps between the modules, we planned to control the environment and to create a space that corresponds to the place, with the same system everywhere.

The modules are arranged in parallel, and in the gaps between the modules, which are ground in plan, a single-flowing shed, like the sawtooth roof of a factory, is erected to provide light, heat and ventilation to the gentle north side of the building. At both ends, the geometrical shed protrudes and have a drainspouts looks like a couple of columns supports the shed, that makes the continuity with containers bar.
The classical composition of the two columns and the shed, which on the plan had a figure-ground relationship, has been transformed on the elevation into a sequence of figures, container-shed-container-shed-container, with a contrast of figurative-abstract-concrete-abstract-concrete, thus eliminating the vertical subject-object relationship.
By creating an appropriately grouping of symbolic parts to balance the containers without becoming too diagrammatic, the building is able to integrate itself into the disparate but strangely integrated Japanese cityscape in a contrasting way.

Indoors, the plan is cross-modular and as free as possible.
As a result, the modules are fragmented and appear in the interior space. The used sea containers are of the same standard, but they have different histories, such as layers of paint, scratches, joints, stickers, etc., and their various expressions are incorporated into the interior space.For the signage, new stickers, clipping the letter, were placed on top of the original ones, in contrast to the original ones, but with the same expression of the container.

The wooden structure of the building is based on the idea of recognising the substrate materials of the interior as a structural element, as the used sea container is not considered to be a steel structure by law. This redundant composition of wood and containers creates a strange landscape in which the seemingly macho architecture, which expresses a modular structure, is fragmented and blended into the cityscape and interior spaces.








KOTOBUKI cheese factory