this church in japan’s mie prefecture has been completed for the growing catholic population who come to work at honda’s nearby car factory. designed by kyoto-based firm alphaville, the project also serves as a gathering and meeting place for the international community. located in suzuka city, at the intersection of an old highway and a new motorway, the scheme features a large undulating roof that recalls the form of the nearby mountain ranges.

alphaville catholic church suzuka
all images by toshiyuki yano

 

 

the dramatic canopy has been designed by alphaville to contain three separate areas, which each serve different purposes. the church is positioned to the north, while a conference area for meetings and other functions is prominently situated at the center of the plan. at the opposite end of the site, a series of smaller rooms contain the priest’s residence as well as a chapel and an office.

alphaville catholic church suzuka
the undulating roof recalls the form of the surrounding mountain ranges

 

 

to provide space for parishioners to park their cars, the entire structure is elevated — forming a sheltered parking lot the size of the building at ground level. in addition to referencing the region’s mountainous terrain, the church’s jagged roofline also ensures that natural light reaches each area of the scheme. openings at every five meters allow indirect daylight to illuminate the nave of the church, reducing the need for artificial lighting.

alphaville catholic church suzuka
the building is located at the intersection of an old highway and a new motorway

alphaville catholic church suzuka
the entire structure is elevated, forming a sheltered parking lot at ground level

alphaville catholic church suzuka
the church’s jagged roofline ensures that natural light reaches each area of the scheme

alphaville catholic church suzuka
openings every five meters allow indirect daylight to illuminate the nave of the church

alphaville catholic church suzuka
the site also serves as a gathering place for the region’s international community

alphaville catholic church suzuka
a large catholic population work at honda’s nearby car factory

alphaville catholic church suzuka
a conference area for meetings and other functions is situated at the center of the plan

alphaville catholic church suzuka
galvanized steel sheets have been used to clad the building

 

 

 

project info:

 

name: catholic suzuka church
architects: alphaville — kentaro takeguchi + asako yamamoto
structural engineer: takashi manda
photography: toshiyuki yano

 

use: church
location: suzuka city, mie, japan
site area: 1,619.53 sqm
building area: 839.51 sqm
total floor area: 1,588.85 sqm
scale: 2 stories
facility: church, conference area, father’s residence, parking
structure system: steel
major materials: galvanized steel sheet, aluminum windows, concrete, plaster board, wood
main contractor: matsui construction co., ltd.

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