This rooftop garden lies above the head office of Software Service Inc. nearby Shin-Osaka Station.
For this Japanese garden set on top of an office building in the heart of Osaka, our aim was to create an urban oasis featuring beauty, peace of mind, and a feeling of natural moisture. Since ancient times, Japanese garden landscapes have always made inventive use of water. Here too, despite the constraints imposed by a rooftop garden, we devised Japanese garden scenery here that features depth, scale, and a refreshing feeling of hydration.
When building a rooftop garden such as this, the greatest challenge is the weight. On most buildings, piling up an artificial hill the same way one would for an above-ground garden would be unsustainable, or way too costly to create a load-bearing structure for. That's why we used lightweight materials such as styrofoam used to frame the ground and for everything else ranging from large rocks and soil to the mortar we used to harden the streambed. The word "light" may make these materials sound rather trifling. Yet even the garden's powerful stone arrangement, which is actually made of reinforced plastic, is based on a customized design created from an actual stone arrangement and is so intricately detailed that you can't tell the difference without touching it.
The garden is made up of two areas, a spiritual dry landscape garden using white sand and a dry waterfall stone arrangement, and a landscape with reminders of one's native place, such as a terraced paddy field stone wall, a pond, and a stream.
Thus, an urban oasis was born by taking weight reduction into account and arranging cherry blossoms and maple trees so that seasonal scenery can be enjoyed while looking out at the high-rise building district between the trees. This is how traditional Kyoto gardening skills make new garden vistas possible in the modern world.
Location: Yodogawa-ku, Osaka City
Accessibility: not open to the public
Garden construction period: in 2014
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