photo Toshiyuki Yano
Tagawa child center “Maimai”
Child care support center
A whirling space that embraces and encompasses a variety of environments
This is a municipal facility with a kindergarten, nursery school and childcare support center in Tagawa City, Fukuoka Prefecture. Tagawa City, with a population of 50,000, is located in the northeastern part of Fukuoka Prefecture and once flourished as a coal mining town. In the midst of an aging population and declining birthrate, the city decided to consolidate two kindergartens, one nursery school, and a child-rearing support center to create a child-rearing center for the city.
In order to realize the city’s philosophy of “diversity within the same,” the building is arranged in a whirling shape, with three functions connected to each other, as if to enclose the school garden. The whirling shape is both open and protected, and I thought it would be suitable for the future childcare environment, so I presented an image of a facility with a variety of functions and a variety of activities by children and adults. Because the site is large enough to include the parking lot and lawn area of the sports park, we made it a single-story building and arranged the facilities across the entire site. The difference in elevation between the parking lot and the lawn is connected by a ramp to connect the three functions of the facilities.
The whirling layout creates a safe enclosed yard and at the same time, all the nursery rooms face the south. The facility is long and narrow, so that each room has openings on two sides facing the outside, providing lighting and openness to the entire facility. The roof slopes inward to create intimate scale on the garden side and openness that seems to open outward on the other side.
This whirling arrangement can be connected to the whole nursery or divided into several parts, and can be flexibly adapted to future changes in the nursery environment.