The Archives of Memory, Tokyo Vertical Cemetery
The proposal for the vertical cemetery in Shinjuku, Tokyo, is a recording of the contemporary city: its archetypes and the discontinuity of both history and memory. The scheme recasts the typology of the cemetery from void to an archival urban object.
The built environment within a city is founded on social interactions, the forces and energies of the city. This allows synergies between self-reflection, memory, the ritual of passage and the city.
Geometries from Shinjuku’s urban fabric dictate the built form. Spatial vectors are extended across the city, refracted and reorganised, ordering new hierarchies around a series of internal nodes within the proposed built form.
Axial tensions of the city are released through the separation of the structure at the ground plane, revealing a sectional instability. The Columbarium (storage for the deceased) explores an archaeological condition, while the tower offers a range of meeting spaces and pavilions for individual and collective reflection.
In building to the perimeter of the proposed site, the architecture lends a solidity to its context. The façade/anti-façade is generated through manipulations of extrusions and geometric intersections, peeled back to reveal the internal organisation of the vertical cemetery, while reframing vistas with surrounding districts and the railway line.
Through inert references and explicit civic gestures, the project interrogates the relationship of the individual within the city. It demonstrates a recognition of an individual’s memory, living and deceased, within the morphology of the city.
Thus project is a response to the Vertical Cemetery Design Competition
Project Team: Ian Nazareth, Hesam Mohamed, Kelvin Chai