situated within a residential area in tokyo, japan, between a wide bustling road and a narrow alley,  r/urban design office (R/UDO) has introduced their new studio. the open, bright workplace was formed by merging a commercial tenant space and a house, which were previously separated by a wall. 

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exterior view – engawa

all images by kenya chiba



‘tori-doma, which can be seen in traditional japanese houses, is the unpaved utility space that connects the main entrance and the sub-entrance’ R/UDO explains. reinterpreting this concept within the interior, the designers were able to create a new office space that can be flexibly change depending on the furniture placement. in this way, the new studio can also easily accommodate future changes in the number of people.



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exterior view – gallery space open to neighborhood



the rest of the area was divided by 6 walls, sheltering a meeting space, storage, toilet, kitchen, management space, and sub-entrance, which are all accessed from the tori-doma. the site features an ‘engawa’ (typical semi-outdoor space in japanese traditional houses), which was previously used as a private space, due to its constrained size. however, by setting back the position of the entrance door by about 1 meter, the architects created a more open, external piloti space, which can serve as a local community gathering space. 





besides architectural design work, the studio also holds other various activities, such as meetings with visitors, internal study sessions, and sometimes public events. to support the diverse, free use of the workplace, the fixtures and curtains are designed to allow spacial change. thus, the design includes sliding frame doors with polycarbonate sheets and a large sliding flush door with a galvanized steel sheet.



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exterior view – meeting space open to neighborhood



by fully opening the sliding doors with polycarbonate sheet, the tori-doma will be connected to the wide road via the ‘engawa’. meanwhile, if the large sliding door is opened, the meeting space will be intelinked to the city. by incorporating multiple connections between interior / exterior spaces or between rooms, the office instantly opens to diverse possibilities.



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big sliding doors between meeting space and ‘engawa’


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exterior view at night – company logo “/” and bracing member of frame door are integrated


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interior view – walls to gently separate each function


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interior view – galvanized steel sheet pasted on the surface of the wall reflects the landscape


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view to the ‘engawa’ and the neighborhood


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interior view – working desks 


r urban design office head office 12interior view – layering of various materials


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modal spacial change patterns 



project info:


name: R/UDO head office
architecture office: r/urban design office (R/UDO)
lead designer: tomohiko amemiya




designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: myrto katsikopoulou | designboom