a shelter & a headquarters

a total of 13 projects came out on top in the american institute of architects' 2008 aia honor awards. these are my two favorite projects from the list:

designed by olson sundberg kundig allen architects, delta shelter is located in mazama, washington ~ a tiny commuity in the eastern cascade mountain range 28 miles from the canadian border. this 1,000-square-foot weekend cabin is essentially a steel-clad box on stilts that can be completely shuttered when the owner is away. raised above the ground to minimize potential flood damage {as it's located in a floodplain} and take in 360-degree views of the surrounding forest and mountains, the cabin was conceived as a low-tech, virtually indestructible weekend house. the 20’ x 20’ square footprint rises three stories and is topped by the living room/kitchen with large, 10’ x 18’ steel shutters that can be closed simultaneously using a hand crank. it just won the 2007 american architects award, among many others.

heifer international is dedicated to alleviating world hunger, poverty & suffering, so it's no surprise they commisssioned a green design for their new world headquarters located in little rock, arkansas. the fayetteville arkansas -based firm polk stanley rowland curzon porter architects created an innovative building plan to maximize all the best features a modern office building could provide. it is designed as a series of ringed bands that radiate outward. its narrow corridors ensure that all offices have access to natural sunlight, and a plethora of green features earned the design a spot on the aia committee on the environment’s top 10 green list and leed® platinum certification. project design manager reese rowland compares the project to ripples of water radiating out from a center. the concept of the "ripple effect" is central to heifer's mission of bringing livestock to impoverished rural populations throughout the world. the program is structured so that if a cow or sheep is given to a family, they learn how to take care of it and pass on offspring and knowledge to other villagers. thus, sustainable methods of husbandry ripple through the population.
using this concept as a starting point, the architects organized the site plan into concentric rings, radiating outward from the "impact point" of the entrance commons. a lovely article describing the project in detail can be found on the architecture week site.


vineeta said...

I simply LOVED delta shelter- It must be amazing to be live in it with nature so close to you & brought still closer by design!
Heifer International is a superb example of how a 'concept' can be taken across to such a large scale, practically.
thanx for sharing!
And Angie, my tagged post is FINALLY up :)

studio wellspring said...

glad you enjoyed it v, and so excited to jump over and read your tag responses!

tangobaby said...

I want my own Delta Shelter! And a kitty to go with it.

Kibblesnbits said...

The Delta Shelter is an interesting concept that I've been thinking about for quite awhile - having a secluded, low impact vacation home that incorporates low-tech but effective security for when the owner is away. OSKA put together a well thought out design that, given the site, is much more suitable than earth-sheltered residences that I've been researching. Bravo!

I wonder about the r-value of the glazing and walls, however.

studio wellspring said...

i'd love to design one for you someday, tangobaby!

hi kibblesnbits & welcome...glad you found some inspiration here. that's what it's all about, after all. ;o) do drop in again!