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Up to three groups of people can live in this rusting small home


August 18, 2014

The Transustainable House, by Japanese architecture firm Sugawaradaisuke (Photo: Jérémie Souteyrat)

The Transustainable House, by Japanese architecture firm Sugawaradaisuke (Photo: Jérémie Souteyrat)

Image Gallery (24 images)

Japanese homes are often designed to last a relatively short time before being demolished and rebuilt, so it's little wonder that the country produces a disproportionately high number of quirky residences. The Transustainable House reflects this trend, and sports a facade that rusts over time. In addition, despite measuring just 38 sq m (409 sq ft), it can house up to three groups of people at once.

Designed by Japanese architecture firm Sugawaradaisuke, Transustainable House is located in Chofu, Tokyo, and was completed earlier this year. Though small, the interior of the house features plenty of natural sunlight and a flexible layout that can be adapted to suit the needs of the occupants.

Indeed, Sugawaradaisuke's plans show up to three groups of people – a young couple, their parents, and a boarder – all living under the same roof following a re-shuffle of furniture. This setup seems sure to test the residents' patience to breaking point in what remains a single bathroom home.

When configured with its standard layout, the Transustainable House features a kitchen, dining area, and one bedroom upstairs. The downstairs comprises a couple of flexible semi-outdoor spaces covered by the same stone pebbles found around the home's plot and garden areas. There's also an additional bedroom, and a bathroom that appears to be alarmingly lacking in privacy.

In order to achieve the Transustainable House's rusted facade, Sugawaradaisuke mixed plaster with iron powder. It should continue to weather over time as it is exposed to wind and rain.

Source: Sugawaradaisuke via Arch Daily

About the Author
Adam Williams Adam scours the globe from his home in North Wales in order to bring the best of innovative architecture and sustainable design to the pages of Gizmag. Most of his spare time is spent dabbling in music, tinkering with old Macintosh computers and trying to keep his even older VW bus on the road. All articles by Adam Williams

Build a larger house to last the ages will save more resources than this nonsense.


Hm. Add a half bath/water closet to make it easier to take a pee if someone else is soaking in the tub for an hour and opaque walls on the bathrooms and it isn't such a big deal - all you need is privacy in the toilet, and a private bedroom. Sharing common space is no big deal, you sit in the dining room to eat, you cook in the kitchen, you socialize in the living room. Families have done it for centuries after all. Growing up as a middle income kid in the 70s I didn't have a private bathroom ensuite, and a bedroom, and a private living room - each of us kids had a bedroom, the whole house had a full bathroom upstairs shared by everybody and a toilet/WC downstairs shared by everybody.

Aruvqan Myers

Its a probably a good thing we are unable to actually experience living in this house. The photos have been carefully shot to give an illusion of space and light.


I concur with aruvqan, add privacy elements and a WC downstairs, and at 409sq.ft. is a doable space for 5 people. The minimalist decor and those killer stairs would never work in the west. The caged-in area is wasted if it's only something to look at and a light source.


A boarder is not a "group", unless the person has multiple personality disorder.

Gregg Eshelman

I'm wondering how much research went into that "facade that rusts over time". What an achievement!

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