Japanese studio Takehiko Nez Architects created an interesting play of light and volumes when designing the extension to an existing hair salon in Yamanashi, Japan. Called Vision, the modern hair salon sits at the confluence of past and future, displaying a welcoming glass front facade. This allows a clear view of daily employee-client interaction while exploring an interesting architectural set of design lines. By allowing full visibility towards the modernly designed interiors, the hair salon is a much more inviting commercial space now that a fascinating glass facade draws curious passers-by. Long and elegant curtains manipulate the amount of natural light needed for the interiors in different times of the day. This exposure facade faces a parking lot, while the existing building and the addition have a garden in between. An underground shampoo space links the existing building to the extension, creating a logical and modern path for clients moving from one part of the hair salon to the other. Transparency seems to have been the main goal of the addition, setting new standards for the daily routine of the Japanese hair salon.
Value for money is not, and never was, the same as being cheap. Value for money means making the most of whatever budget is available. A good example of this is Hayes Primary School in London, by Hayhurst and Co. Having to contend with a tightly controlled 3 million local authority budget, they worked with the existing structure of the primary school to give it a much needed update. A striking polished stainless steel brise-soleil facade installed at the school’s entrance, gives the school’s many different buildings a sense of identity, while new classrooms have been created in a range of shapes and sizes, and are often flooded with natural light
The best architects can create designs which will give clients and the public things they didn’t even realise they wanted, and this is especially important when architects are given the difficult brief of creating structures in much-loved, iconic areas.