In the mountainous heart of Kyoto Prefecture, the Minka Summit 2024 sets the stage for an ambitious exploration of Japan's architectural past with a keen eye on future sustainability.

Held April 19 to 21, the annual event organized by the nonprofit organization Kominka Japan bridges architectural tradition with contemporary possibilities. First held in 2022, the Minka Summit’s aim is to illuminate the significance of minka (literally, “people’s house”) or kominka (traditional wooden houses) in the face of the country's increasing number of akiya (abandoned buildings). At the same time, renovation of these buildings is seeing a resurgence, not the least among foreign residents — a trend clearly reflected in Minka Summit 2024’s schedule.

The annual Minka Summit beckons kominka owners, architecture enthusiasts and sustainability advocates alike to not only celebrate Japan’s kominka but also delve into the preservation and innovative reuse of these architectural relics. The event’s location about 90 minutes by car or bus in Hanase, northern Kyoto Prefecture, provides a scenic backdrop, enhancing the connection between the summit’s activities, the traditional architecture it celebrates and the Japanese countryside where many kominka are located.