One of the new parks and urban spaces we’re most looking forward to visiting this year is the Portland Japanese Garden, which recently got a 3.4-acre, $33.5 million expansion courtesy of noted Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, who worked with the Garden’s Curator as well as master garden craftsman Sadafumi Uchiyama on the project. The new Cultural Village officially opened to the public last weekend, attracting 800 guests in the first hour.
While Kuma has delivered some wild, out-of-the-box designs before, his work for the Portland Japanese Garden, one of the most authentic outside Japan, is all about tranquility and tradition. The new Cultural Village, Kuma’s first commission in the U.S., references Japan’s monzenmachi, which were traditional villages surrounding sacred shrines and temples. Here, each new structure is LEED-certified, with lush green roofs to harvest rainwater and prevent run-off. Together they house new gallery spaces, workshop space, cafe, library, and more. Take a tour, below.