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Kobayashi laboratory, koblab, pursues to revitalize and enforce communities and to create new value in the environment involved in communication-based social, cultural, and spatial design stemming from the micro-culture of an area and the traits that compose its rich sense of place in local society.

— Architecture and urban design has clear impacts on the community, so we strive to comprehend how form affects people’s lives. If communities are not well understood, formal interventions will not respond to the needs of the people and, therefore, they will not complement the area. We try to understand what notions of people and culture create an effective design methodology and what kinds of form create positive outcomes. We try to visualize the invisible character of communities and translate that character into form through our various projects.— We execute a broad range of projects that goes beyond traditional architectural design and construction to pursue design-build methods based on the tectonics of architecture and an understanding of the social role of architecture. We explore effective ways to contribute to society and create new social capital by shaping the form and plan of communities and planning for the future of their living environment.

— In each project we visit the actual site at the right moment and closely observe the place and its people, accept actual problems agilely, and respond to the situation at the site by using a positive, analytical and creative design methodology. This process makes students commit to the problems of the community and embody them by themselves, which feeds them for the next challenge of solving the problems.

— In academic year 2016, we are engaged in the Veneer House project( / and the Congo Acadex School project in which architectural design and construction is executed with self-build method in devastated or outlying area, Tane rural revitalization project in Shiga prefecture through reforming an old folk house and supporting and cultivating young people, the Nihonbashi urban renewal project based on communication with local 
community, and the SBC (Student Build Campus) project in which students, professors, staffs, and graduates work together to create a new residential education. — We keep on executing real projects in society and acting with responsibility to be able to commit to the actual problems of the society closely and realistically.



Understand Urban Space

「Ginza Action」
Ginza action is a research action for reconfirming the spirit of Ginza which is a microculture of the region, investigating and analyzing how to inherit them for the future and how to create a new spirit of Ginza from the perspective of time and space.

Urban Research and Design (URD) is an action targeting the urban environment that considers the future of the city through research and study of the urban environment and community in Yaesu, Nihonbashi, and Kyobashi (Hachinikikyo), which date back to ancient times.

Clarify the uniqueness of the place

「Tane no Neta」
A catalog of objects and activities from the depopulated mountain village of Tane, Nagahama City, Shiga Prefecture. This catalogue, collected and distributed as a book, stimulates the experience of encountering elements of Tane serendipitously. References to other pages are found throughout the book, connecting related objects and activities described on each pages. Using this web of references, readers can discover various aspects of the village in different sequences.

This project aimed to create a new place in Shibuya that connects visitors and residents from the third person’s perspective through research from various perspectives. We visualised our results graphically and stereographically and displayed them at the urban art exhibition “shibuya 1000” .

Clarify the uniqueness of the Actions

「Do It Anyway:An Exhibition」
Do It Anyway:An Exhibition looked back on the past 16 years of koblab projects, which took place in 2021. Methodologies found in past projects by doing it anyway are extracted and visualized in various ways.

Designing with simple structure

「Minimal Veneer House」
The minimal veneer house project is a simplistic, easily constructible, wedge-less house, created to demonstrate how minimal design can be achieved using only plywood.

「Slovenia Shelter」
Built in September of 2017 by the members of koblab and students in Slovenia, this shelter serves as a place for Syrian refugees to stay as they migrate out of Syria.

「Myanmar Shelter」
The Myanmar shelter is a small house designed to protect the local families and communities in Myanmar being affected by the political unrest in the country. Each house is designed so that its pieces can be cut by hand and constructed with ease.

Designing the structure

「Kawauchi wine tasting pavilion」
koblab designed and built a pavilion overlooking the vineyards in Kawauchi Village, Fukushima Prefecture, which began making wine in 2017 as a symbol of recovery from the nuclear accident, even though it was not originally a wine region.

「No-Nail Beach House」
This is a summer-only arch-shaped veneer beach house constructed
annually from 2016 to 2021 at Katase Higashihama Beach in Enoshima, Fujisawa City, Kanagawa Prefecture.

Designing for children

「Kids Booth」
We attempted to design booths and furniture that would fit the children’s scale and that they could assemble together without taking too much time. Through the experience of assembling the booths and furniture with elementary school children, we gave them a mock class to create their own place to stay.

「Kidsʼ Architecture Book」
This action, started in 2021, aims to produce a book to help kids discover the fun of architecture. By expanding the imagination with the pictures drawn in the book, and making models by themselves, we want kids to feel a fascination for architecture.

Designing for problems

「Bamboo House」
The Bamboo House is a collaboration between koblab and Munakata City to explore solutions to the ecologically damaging bamboo problem by constructing community-based architecture using bamboo as a material.

「Off-grid Compact House」
We have designed a deployable off-grid house that can be transported anywhere by truck, with the aim of providing temporary housing more quickly in times of disaster. We are actually constructing and installing the houses and solving issues for implementation.

「Sakura Banba」
for elderly people with dementia, in which koblab and the local community of Nagahama city in Shiga prefecture took part in the process of building. The goals were to use local materials, to follow the traditional folk style, and to maintain openness to the community.

「Myanmar Veneer House」
This action is to support the construction and operation of a learning center facility for the purpose of improving the educational and living environment and making the village self-reliant, in order to solve various problems that were brought to light through a field survey carried out in Manoheri village in Myanmar.

Designing through role play

「Tane “Kyanse” Place (Uetani Residence) Renovation Action」
In the area of Tane, Nagahama-cho, Shiga Prefecture, the local community has given us permission to use an old private house, with the aim of updating it as a “base for research activities by koblab and Professor Shun Kanda’s team from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the United States” and a “base for promoting regional revitalization”. This renovation project was undertaken with “branding the Taniguchi cedar” and “building a relationship between the local community and students” in mind.

「Congo Acadex Elementary School」
Congo Acadex Elementary School is a project designed to learn from each other’s culture and environment of Congo and Japan while working together to create the best possible outcome.

Action for the place

「Taking place in Hillside Terrace of Daikanyama」
koblab has aimed to analyze and integrate the history of Daikanyama, the architectural characteristics of Hillside Terrace, and the connection with the surrounding regions into this action, in order to design a “place of belonging” for the people of this generation, as the site celebrates its 50th anniversary.

「Muro-yon Bar」
Muro-yon Bar was a one-night street restaurant and bar event held to explore and reinforce the cultural and geographic identity of Muromachi 4-Chome.




従来の建築の設計や施工の方法論の先を見据え、建築が果たす社会的役割りを理解し、社会の問題解決に貢献できるデザイン・ビルドの世界を模索する建築のテクトニックに根ざしたプロジェクトから、社会のコミュニティの形態とその形に注目し、将来のあるべきまちの姿を構想するソーシャルキャピタルを構想するプロジェクトまでを横断する幅広いプロジェクトに取組んでいる。 各プロジェクトでは、自らの身体を使って能動的に分析・解決・創作するデザイン手法によって、適切なタイミングで現地に赴き、土地や人をよく知り、柔軟な態度をもって問題を受け入れ、その場で求められる対応に的確に応えようとしていく。この過程を通して問題を自分のこととして身体化し、次の問題解決のための糧としていく。

被災地や遠隔地でセルフビルドによる建築設計・施工を行うベニアハウスプロジェクト(やコンゴ・アカデックスプロジェクト、古民家改修や若者育成を通して地方再生を目指す滋賀県田根プロジェクト、コミュニティとの対話に基づく都心のまちづくりを行う日本橋プロジェクト、学生・教職員・卒業生が一体となって新しい滞在型教育を創造するSBC (Student Build Campus) プロジェクトを行っている。これからも実社会におけるリアルなプロジェクトを通し、自らが自らと社会との関係を より近く現実味を持って感じ責任をもって介入していくことを目指してアクションを起こしていきたい。














ミャンマーシェルターは、ミャンマーの政情不安の影響を受けている地元の家族やコミュニティを保護するために設計された小さなシェルターです。 それぞれのシェルターは、手で切り取って簡単に組み立てられるように設計されています。


















  • Shiga Tane Folk House Restauration (Bedroom) 2016
    滋賀県田根地区 古民家再生(寝室)2016

  • Shiga Tane Folk House Restauration (Bedroom) 2017
    滋賀県田根地区 古民家再生(風呂場)2017

  • Slovenia Slovenj Gradec Veneer Community Pavilion 2017
    スロベニア スロベン・グラデッツ ベニアコミュニティハウス 2017

  • Congo Kimbondo Acadex Elementary School Infirmary 2016
    コンゴ キンポンド アカデックス小学校保健室 2016

  • ongo Kimbondo Acadex Elementary School Workshop 2016
    コンゴ キンポンド アカデックス小学校ワークショップ 2016

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