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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.

Tubakuba mountain hut in Bergen, Norway by OPA FORM architects

 
February 20th, 2015 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: OPA FORM architects

Hovering above the city, hidden behind trees in the forest of Bergen’s most famous mountain; through a tuba-tunnel, you can enter a wooden bubble. One night, just for you and your kids.
The project is the result of a design-build workshop at Bergen School of Architecture lead by Espen Folgerø at OPA FORM architects.

Image Courtesy © Espen Folgerø

Image Courtesy © Espen Folgerø

  • Architects: OPA FORM architects
  • Project: Tubakuba mountain hut
  • Location: Bergen, Norway
  • Photography: Espen Folgerø, Helge Skodvin, Marina Magreøy, Stine Elise Kristoffersen, Gunnar Sørås
  • PROJECT TEAM: 
  • Students: Gunnar Sørås, Bent Brørs, Ida Helen Skogstad, Adrian Højfeldt, Eivind Lechbrandt, Alice Guan, Luise Storch, Eline Moe Eidvin, Shepol Barzan, Øyvind Kristiansen, Stein Atle Juvik, Eva Bull, Kristian Bøysen and Sondre Bakken.
  • Professors: Espen Folgerø, Håvard Austvoll, Sigurdur Gunnarsson and Hans Christian Elstad

Image Courtesy © Helge Skodvin

Image Courtesy © Helge Skodvin

DESIGN-BUILD 
BAS has a long tradition of teaching architecture through practical work. 1:1 sketching is an important way to both solve issues and recognizing new solutions, getting an understanding of dimension and scale. The outdoor facilities at BAS was used to build mock-up models of the project. The students then completed the construction with financial support from G.C. Rieber Funds.

Image Courtesy © Helge Skodvin

Image Courtesy © Helge Skodvin

LOCAL AND INFLUENCED TECHNIQUES 
Tubakubais constructed of 95 percent wood. The interior is clad in plywood, while flexible wooden boards of the western Norwegian pine and the exterior is clad with burned larch. The characteristic tunnel consists of curved shavings of pine mounted in layers to provide sufficient strength, while the south wall is clad with untreated larch, which will turn gray with time.

The burned cladding is made with the traditional Japanese method ShouSugi Ban. This is a treatment to prevent fungal decay and damage.

Image Courtesy © Marina Magreøy

Image Courtesy © Marina Magreøy

SUSTAINABILITY – ENERGY 
With no electricity – the project is the only off-the grid hotel-room in Bergen. The project aims to minimize the need for heating by minimizing the indoor volume. The materials chosen for the construction and insulation is wood all the way through the walls, floor and ceiling. The bent strips of wood in the entrance can be found as shavings from sawmill production and the cladding is made by carbonizing (burning) second grade wooden cladding planks. Inside the walls, roof and floor the insulation consists of wooden fibers – a hygroscopic material that allows for the construction to breath, excluding the need for mechanical ventilation.

Image Courtesy © Stine Elise Kristoffersen

Image Courtesy © Stine Elise Kristoffersen

SOCIAL SUSTAINABILITY 
The Norwegian outdoors is in theory free and accessible for all. However it requires a lot of gear and resources to use it. The Tuba Cube offers a hotel room that is free of charge on the border between the wild nature and the city. Especially aimed at families with young children the aim of the project is to make outdoor experiences possible for everybody and give children a positive first meeting with spending the night in a forest.

Image Courtesy © Gunnar Sørås

Image Courtesy © Gunnar Sørås

A ROOM WITH A VIEW 
Tubakuba is a 14 square meter room with a view, somewhere between a tent and a cabin, that you enter through a “tuba tunnel”. The feeling of floating over the city is highly present, especially when you get closer to the large windows facing the steep hill down towards the city center.
Tubakubais not only built for those who booked it for the night. The project also wants to be an experience for the hikers, Sunday strollers and the neighbor kindergarten. Sheltered under the cottage you will find a nice picnic area – and the tuba tunnel can function as a shelter for rain, for fun and play.

Image Courtesy © Gunnar Sørås

Image Courtesy © Gunnar Sørås

In addition to being flexible in its use, the Tubakuba adds something to the city that we may lack today; an urban cottage. To use this cottage you neither need a car or travel very far, because of the proximity to the public tram which climbs up-and down Fløyen from the city center every 15-30 minutes.

Image Courtesy © Gunnar Sørås

Image Courtesy © Gunnar Sørås

Image Courtesy © OPA FORM architects

Image Courtesy © OPA FORM architects

Image Courtesy © OPA FORM architects

Image Courtesy © OPA FORM architects

Image Courtesy © OPA FORM architects

Image Courtesy © OPA FORM architects

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