Accommodated in a local temple, three UNSW Built Environment Master of Architecture students, Katy Burrough, Anna Paton and Sarah Sim, accompanied by Peter Murray have just completed a very successful six day working fieldtrip to Guju-Hashiman city in Japan.

The formal program focussed on developing ‘adaptive reuse’ design options for a 150 year old timber Minka house in the city. Working in collaborative design teams with students from the Gifu Academy of Forest Science and Culture and a group from the University of Tasmania, three proposals were developed and presented to representatives of the City Council.

In addition to the serious work of the design program were a series of excursions and talks by Japanese architects and crafts people. Excursions included a visit to a small timber mill, exploring areas of natural and plantation forests accompanied by a local forester, and number of local shrines.

"By lucky coincidence our visit coincided with a major six week traditional dance festival in the city and an annual blessing at a small shrine that formed a part of our design site. We participated in both and as a result of our contribution to the design program a banner acknowledging UNSW Built Environment will stand along with others at the shrine for the coming year."

"For all of us a very productive and enjoyable time, much learnt, many interesting people met, much local cuisine sampled and a good tasting of the local Saki. This is an experience we hope will be able to be repeated over the coming years.

Image: Gujo City. At the site shrine for the blessing ceremony, Gifu Academy staff and students + from right: Anna, Sarah, Peter holding UNSW banner and Katy