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Plain House, © Muji

Japan is afflicted by earthquakes particularly often owing to its geographical location on an unstable part of the earth’s crust where continental plates collide against each other. The inhabitants of the Japanese isles do not only live with the awareness that catastrophe can break out around them at any time; they also prepare for it and try to protect themselves as best they can. This includes houses built to be earthquake-proof. Japanese design and lifestyle company Muji has now opened a version of its “plain house” in Yamaguchi prefecture for people who are interested.

The one-storeyed building constructed from timber is also known by the name “yō no ie” and is earthquake-proof, fully insulated and possesses large doors that spaciously open the rooms out into an extended terrace and (possible) garden. The floor plan for the “plain house” makes do without any permanent walls. The open-plan living area can be extended into the adjoining terrace while the bedroom can be sectioned off with a movable wall. The house’s flexible configuration, with a total floor area of 101.85 sqm, can be adapted to suit various working and living habits and cater to a multitude of lifestyles. The “plain house” is currently only available in Japan and costs the equivalent of about USD 182,000.

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