Alleys and Architecture.


Day 4-Near Hotel Celestine  48 Day 2-Shinjuku-ku 40 Arrival at Hotel Celestine 13

(Photos: Andrew B. Hurvitz)

Last year, on a visit to Japan, I discovered alleys that were vibrant, clean and functional.

In a country where 127m live on land mass that is smaller than California, space is put to good use.

Little houses, imaginatively designed, are integrated into narrow streets and alleys. (Photos: Dezeen)Cave-by-Eto-Kenta-Atelier-Architects_dezeen_1sq dezeen_Small-House-by-Unemori-Architects_0sq House-by-Tsubasa-Iwahashi-Architects_dezeen_1sq House-in-Fukasawa-by-LEVEL-Architects_dezeen_3sqa KKZ-House-by-International-Royal-Architecture_dezeen_ss_50 Monoclinic-House-by-Kazuko-SakamotoAtelier-Tekuto_dezeen_sq Switch-restaurant-and-residence-by-Apollo-Architects_dezeen_3sqa

Whether an entrance is in front or back makes no difference to a Japanese house.

What counts is the integrity and artistry of the architecture.

LA, and the entire state of California, has an extreme shortage of affordable and civilized housing.

Why not emulate Japan and make use of our alleys, the back of our buildings, and enormous asphalt parking lots to create civilized spaces for residential development?


 

Sherman Oaks alleys below.

Photo credit: Andrew B. Hurvitz

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3 responses to “Alleys and Architecture.

  1. It’s the worship of the automotive and the fear of the poor that drives our decay. Japan’s alleys are streets mostly for walking. Who walks in LA? And who is going to call the police on you if you are walking in LA?

    • A lot of people walk in LA. They take the bus and train and bike. And there would be even more people walking if walkable areas were developed. We can’t only lament the current condition of our city. We have to imagine it as it can be, and work towards that end.

  2. California used to be on the cutting edge. Now it seems like too many people are just cutting out. What happened to this land of innovation? How do we turn things around?

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