Japanese practice, Tezuka Architects has completed the project of Ring Around a Tree, a dual-propose annex building at Fuji Kindergarten, in Tachikawa, Tokyo, Japan. Located adjacent to the existing school, the structure functions as both, english-language classrooms and as a waiting station for school buses.
Permeated by wandering branches and overgrown foliage, the structure looks to destroy the boundaries between internal and external, and built and natural environments. Seven staggered floor plates modestly surround the mature and twisting tree, its columns and stairways dissolved into the shadows of the leaves and hardwood.
The continuous centripetal from reflects that of the main building, its partially exposed volume sheltered by the tree's large canopy. It contained within a five meter height, the open treehouse-like structure features a series of compresses and enclosed spaces accessible only to crouching, crawling children, void of many barriers, the offset platforms are covered in soft rubbers mats that help cushion the small, tender bodies and inevitable accidents.
The glass enclosed unit hosts two classrooms that are clear of traditional desks and chairs. Each consuming one floor, the learning environments aim to project a fruitful and liberating atmosphere that is free of constrictive elements.
|Floor Plan/ Level 0|
|Floor Plan/ Level 1|
|Floor Plan/Level 2|
|Floor Plan/ Level 3|
|Floor Plan/ Level 4|
|Floor Plan/ Level 5|
Photos/Images by Tezuka Architects & Katsuhisa Kida