A password will be e-mailed to you.
[highlight1]  Ofunato Civic Cultural Center and Library  [/highlight1]

Designed by the Meguro-based studio Chiaki Arai Urban & Architecture Design, the new building sits astride the landscape like a grey crustacean, with concrete claws that thrust down into the ground. The hard-edged exterior is certainly striking, from the fluted fortress-like form of the fly tower above the main theatre space to the angled buttresses, but it’s the interior that really impresses.

Arai has mimicked the distinctive coastline of the Pacific coast in Ofunato prefecture, using layer upon layer of contoured concrete to form inverted ‘river valleys’ that rise up above visitors’ heads. The complex includes studios, galleries, a library, tea room and concert hall.

In the grand tradition of Japanese civic architecture – a genre that has seen masterworks by Kenzo Tange, Tadao Ando and Kisho Kurokawa, amongst others – the new Ofunato Civic Cultural Center and Library is a virtuoso display of eccentric concrete forms.

Dressing room and large hall:

Great Hall:

It is a multi-function hall that can accommodate lectures, such as video, music, drama, classical performing arts, and various events. Approximately 430 seats, 2 floor seats about 650 on the first floor, plus the audience viewing room for parents and bridesmaid, wheelchair seat, the number of seats, the seats it is usually a total of about 1,100 seats.

Consideration to the elderly and handicapped persons, the passage of the front of the stage the audience has become a ramp.

Orchestra pit floor type set, and a small auction mechanism of elevating electric on the stage in front of the stage. Can be accommodated by a temporary runway is needed.

  • Audience seats: Seats on the first floor 652 seat chair seat, wheelchair seat 10 seats, 8 seats seats parent, chair seat seat 430 seat second floor
  • Stage area: 542.21 square meters
  • Proscenium opening: 14 ~ 18.5m
  • Proscenium height: 8.8 ~ 13m
  • Depth 13.5m


Dressing room is a total of 6 rooms, backstage dressing room in large and small dressing room. There is a monitor in any dressing room, which is to understand the state of the stage. By the movement of the movable partition, a large dressing room is also available as one room. In addition, medium and large dressing room unit bus is changing room facilities, the small dressing room. Also are equipped with shower room and laundry room. 12 people, large dressing room dressing room 8 persons, medium and small dressing room 4 persons.


Includes stage machinery, lighting, audio and visual equipment, you can use a variety of. You can also by the movement of the movable partition, use a combination of exhibition galleries around, meeting rooms, workshops, and Japanese-style room, you can respond, such as plays, concerts, lectures, meetings projection, in various events.

Practice room:

One room on the first floor, exercise room, there are two rooms on the third floor. Everyday practice location, so that you can use as a place to do a multi-presentation rehearsal space, practice rooms on the first floor is equipped with a wall mirror and ballet bar for practice. Practice room on the third floor can be used to practice such instruments. You can also be used as a reading room and a library.


Such as production and props used in the event of a large hall, can be used as a venue for creative activities such as painting tools. In addition, in the multi-space and performances to be held in the hall and large, and you can also be used as a waiting room of the performers.

Meeting room:

Can be divided into two chambers by a movable partition is possible. Set has a fitted kitchen, I respond to a variety of activities. You can also use multi-space and integrally.

Exhibition galleries:

It is a full-fledged exhibition space with a movable panel. You can cope with multi-space combination, even large-scale exhibition.

Japanese-style tea house:

Japanese-style tatami 45, can be divided into four rooms. Practice room common room, conference room, Japanese dance, resting place of the multi-space, it is available, such as waiting room. There is also a full-fledged tatami tearoom 4.5. Both Japanese-style tea house, has a standing mizuya.

Overview of library facilities:

Opened in July 1952, moved to the second floor fire department in October 1975, with the opening of Rias Hall in November 2008, city library was moved to its current location.

Currently, collection is about 130 000 books, book video · DVD600, other, including “loans” held by local materials, magazines, newspapers and the Internet terminal, Children’s Services Services, “professional, such as” reference service ” doing, such as “special events” Various, “Save collection of materials and information”, “car navigation mobile library”, “.

Issue “antelope” mobile library is loaded with about 3,500 books, patrol the station 49 stations over the city, including schools and welfare facilities, we strive to service the whole region.

Exhibitions, such as “Picture Book Exhibition” homemade “Christmas Picture Book Exhibition”, various courses such as “adult college course” classroom “handmade picture book”, in the library, enjoy “Parade” story “or” book report contest Ofunato “further It also promote the business, such as “theater parents, to promote reading.

Chiaki Arai Urban and Architecture

Located in Ofunato, a town on the distinctive Sanriku Kaigan coastline of Iwate prefecture in northeastern Japan, Ofunato Civic Center and Library is a cultural building complex which consists of a main hall with 1100 seats, a library, multi-purpose spaces, an atelier, a tea room, and a studio. In its development, regional workshops and fieldwork have been organized by more than 50 times to make communication among architects, local residents and public officers.

Following those workshops, programs of each function were verified, and a library was added as per requests from its locals. How to represent its local form has also been discussed in order to design a new iconic community space. In workshops, architects were required not to adhere to any particular forms or ideas, and to discern architecture, the form of space, from something ambiguous. Through many events, the power in its creating process of architecture motivated the local involvement in the project. Consequently, it has attracted more than 20,000 people every month in a city of 40,000 people since it was inaugurated.

[highlight1]  Project Data  [/highlight1]

Project name: Ofunato Civic Cultural Center and Library, (nickname: Rias Hall)
Location: Sakaricho, Ōfunato-shi, Iwate, Japan
Coordinates: 39.077977, 141.71027
Type: Cultural Center, Theatre and Auditorium, Library
Structure: 4 floors above ground steel frame-reinforced concrete part, 1-story underground
Construction area: 5,238 sqm
Total floor area: 9,128 sqm
Parking: 230 cars
Project Year: 2008
Status: Built
Completion Year: 2009

  • 2011 The International Architecture Awards – THE BEST NEW GLOBAL DESIGN
  • 2011 The Architectural Institute of Japan Awards (AIJ Prizes) – The AIJ Prize for Design and Annual Architectural Design Commendation


[highlight1]  The people  [/highlight1]

Client / Owner / Developer: Ofunato Civic Culture Center and Library
Architects: Chiaki Arai Urban and Architecture, 2-14-19-2F Yutenji, Meguro-ku,Tokyo 153-0052 JAPAN
Project Team: Chiaki Arai, Ryoichi Yoshizaki, Masatoshi Naito
Supervision: Masatoshi Naito
Structural Engineer: TIS and Partners
Engineer And Air Condition : PAC
Acoustical Consultant: Nagata Acoustics
Theater Consultant: Theater Workshop
Interiors: Chiaki Arai, Ryoichi Yoshizaki, Masatoshi Naito
Landscape: Chiaki Arai, Ryoichi Yoshizaki, Masatoshi Naito
Contractors: Toda Corporation
Text Description: © Courtesy of Chiaki Arai Urban and Architecture, Ofunato Civic Culture Center and Library
Images: © Taisuke Ogawa, Chiaki Arai Urban and Architecture

[highlight1]  Location Map  [/highlight1]

pixy Ofunato Civic Cultural Center and Library / Chiaki Arai Urban and Architecture Design

Related Posts:

Post's Gallery:

Send this to a friend