I HOUSE by Shigeru Ban Architects: A Square Building with A Folded Plate Roof

I HOUSE By Shigeru Ban Architects 2

Located in Tokyo, Japan, I HOUSE is a 1991 project designed by Shigeru Ban Architects. It is a square building that sits at a 45-degree angle to the property line to ensure a good and perfect view to the south. Besides two wooden walls that set parallel to each other, this building is also designed with a folded plate roof that is given a tensile function.



In order to make the second-floor living room of this building fully open to the landscape on the south and north sides and also to private the building proper ventilation, the architect creates two wooden walls. These walls are set parallel to each other on the west and east sides.

Along with the steel folded plate roof structure, these walls are tensioned by steel rods anchored to the ground outside the building to make them stand by themselves and resist the lateral stresses without any supporting or bracing the walls.

I HOUSE By Shigeru Ban Architects 1

The folded plate roof is designed and given a tensile function while the structural plywood of the interior is used as finishing material and a bracing. This plywood is also used as a single material that can bear two functions at once, helping to promote a low-cost construction in this project.


I HOUSE Gallery


Photographer: Hiroyuki Hirai

Anke Fassbinder

Anke Fassbinder

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