The strength in keeping the function open, the fascination in changing programs according to use.
Yamamoto (Kazuyo Sejima & Associates)(Y): Before SHIBAURA HOUSE opened we tried to decide on the programs for each floor. But we couldn't conclude how we should use the 2nd and 3rd floors. At one point we decided as them shared offices, among many other ideas, but changed our minds after studying the design of the space. And it is rare that the function of rooms remains unfixed even long after a building has been completed.
I: I think strength can be found in not deciding, which is something my father also said. We can decide later, because in a way, if we rent out the space as an office, it ends there.
Y: A person comes and sees the space, gradually forming ideas on how to use the space, which again alters their program – this is quite interesting.
I: It is difficult to put into words, but as long as we leave some space for possibilities open, there are ways to adapt later. When there was an earthquake disaster three, four years ago, it was impossible to foresee the future. We didn't know whether we could find tenants even if we would have turned the building into office rental space. With that prospect, I chose the path that I would be least likely to regret later - doing something that I wanted to do to start with. Still, trial and error never ends. In a way our management style is unfixed - Ms.Sejima might be worried about that. (Laughter)
Y: Your initial plan was to use half of the building as office spaces. The idea to open up the 1st floor for the neighborhood has not changed, but office spaces diminished to about 1.5 of the floor spaces in the end. As for 2nd and 3rd floor, you and I went around to see different styles of rental offices, but nothing clicked.
I: Yes. There are currently many shared and rental offices.
Y: One early idea was a president's room. But we scraped that eventually.
I: I don’t even have a table now (Laughter). I decide where to work as I wish, following the warmth of the sunlight in winter.