The work of the architectural practice MIKAN, formed in 1995, ranges from private homes to children's centers, senior citizen residences, and the organization of largescale live music events. MIKAN's modus operandi is to approach every structure not only as a unit unto itself but also as a component in the context of its street and neighborhood. In its designs, MIKAN stresses the human element, taking care, through a series of dialogues, to gather input not only from the clients themselves but also from neighbors and potential users.
Like Atelier Bow-Wow, MIKAN is not interested in producing glossy buildings. Instead, its architects, concerned about the fate of the danchi (public housing) that had been built in Tokyo in the 1950s and is now being demolished because of age and dilapidation, developed various ideas for reusing these apartments in the Collective Housing Renewal project they published in 2001. For the past several years the MIKAN group has been concentrating on what it calls "Portable Architecture" - for example, the KH-2 project, a structure that can be hooked onto a trailer and used as a transportable shop or restaurant.