close x

Bluewave Technologies Asutopia Factory


This is a factory which fits all of the manufacturing processes in one building for quality and delivery control, aimed to produce fully made-in-Japan LED lights. More than half of the employees are handicapped. The site, located near the center of the city of Ube in Yamaguchi Prefecture, sits on top of a gentle hill with views southward toward the Setouchi Sea. Thus, we did not want to build the typical factory, a homogeneous space isolated from its environment. We wanted to create a place where one could feel the surrounding landscape and natural light; a place where handicapped and non-handicapped people could both work productively.

We shaped the landscape in relation to the surrounding topography, and in the center placed a roof with a 4.9-meter eave on all sides. The eave not only creates a covered outdoor space connected to the greenery, but also acts as a roof for delivery trucks and for the parking space for wheelchaired workers. The wall is made of translucent polycarbonate hollow cellular panels. At the center, the volume is elevated for natural lighting and ventilation. Interior plants will be added to this lounge area.

The eaves cut direct sunlight, and diffused light enters from the panels. At night, the panels lit up by LEDs become a form of media.

At the north end, office and resident spaces are located as well as a canteen which will be open to the public. Glazed folding doors create an unobstructed connection between the indoor and outdoor.

The structure is made up of small profiled members to minimize the amount of steel; the columns are made of 125 x 125-millimeter -sized H-beams.