herzog & de meuron turns tokyo department store into flagship UNIQLO branch
 

herzog & de meuron turns tokyo department store into flagship UNIQLO branch

herzog & de meuron has transformed an existing shopping mall in tokyo’s ginza district into a global flagship store for apparel brand UNIQLO. the architects began the project by carrying out a study of the building’s structural drawings, which led to the discovery of its original concrete frame. ‘aiming to expose this ‘found’ construction both externally and internally, all extraneous elements such as cladding, suspended ceilings and additions were removed in an exercise of design through subtraction,’ states herzog & de meuron.

herzog de meuron uniqlo
image © nacasa & partners

 

 

a ‘precise surgery’ was then carried out on the exposed concrete grid to create visual and spatial interconnections. these include the store’s double-height entrances and a quadruple-story plaza. ‘existing beams span across the void, some with a mirrored underbelly to fragment its spatial perception,’ herzog & de meuron explains. ‘where the slab is cut away, the raw edge of the concrete and steel is left exposed as a glimpse into the construction process.’

herzog de meuron uniqlo
image © nacasa & partners

 

 

the ‘shelves’ created by the concrete structure are either left open or punctuated with large wooden vitrines or digital screens, creating a central display and open gallery strategy for large site-specific installations. ‘to strengthen the holistic reading of the frame yet still provide for specificity, infills in a variety of materials are applied to each location and function: floors of stone, concrete, timber and metal; ceilings of colored panel and mirror; external façades of glass and cement studded with glass beads,’ continue the architects.

herzog de meuron uniqlo
image © nacasa & partners

 

 

referencing UNIQLO’s graphic identity, red signage cubes define the outer edges of the building. the design team says that these cubes offer an opportunity to display dynamic graphics from designers and artists, becoming part of ginza’s active nighttime image. ‘by stripping away a conventional retail interior, the functional beauty and simplicity of the building’s original concrete skeleton is revealed and is used to generate new spatial excitement and possibilities,’ concludes herzog & de meuron.

herzog & de meuron turns tokyo department store into flagship UNIQLO branch
image © nacasa & partners

herzog & de meuron turns tokyo department store into flagship UNIQLO branch
image © nacasa & partners

 

 

project info:

 

name: UNIQLO TOKYO
location: tokyo, japan
construction start: 27 sep 2019
completion: 15 jun 2020
client: fast retailing co.ltd., tokyo, japan

 

herzog & de meuron project team —
partners: jacques herzog, pierre de meuron, stefan marbach (partner in charge)
project team: dieter mangold (associate, project director), yuko himeno (project manager)
michal baurycza (visualizations), marcelo bernardi (associate), edoardo cappella, teeranop chamnong, massimo corradi, josh helin, ryoko ikeda, ekaterina nuzhdina, lukasz pawlicki, pedro peña jurado, alan pülz, jos reinders, kilian schellenberger, martin schulte (design technologies), florian tropp

 

planning —
executive architect: takenaka corporation, tokyo, japan
executive architect (interior): nomura co., ltd., tokyo, japan
structure engineering: takenaka corporation, tokyo, japan
MEP engineering: takenaka corporation, tokyo, japan

 

specialist / consulting —
lighting consulting: FDS co.,ltd., tokyo, japan
LED signage consulting: hibino chromatek div., LED solution dept., kanagawa, japan
digital graphic design: tha, tokyo, japan
visualizations: aron lorincz ateliers, gödöllő, hungary

 

contractors —
main contractor: takenaka corporation, tokyo, japan
main contractor (interior): nomura co., ltd., tokyo, japan

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