Sanjay Gangal is the President of IBSystems, the parent company of AECCafe.com, MCADCafe, EDACafe.Com, GISCafe.Com, and ShareCG.Com.
Whitetail Woods Regional Park Camper Cabins in Farmington, Minnesota by HGA
April 13th, 2016 by Sanjay Gangal
Article source: The American Institute of Architects (AIA)
Nestled into the hillside of a new regional park, three camper cabins riff on the idea of a tree house entered from a bridge at the crest of a hill. Built on concrete piers to minimize environmental impact, the 227-square-foot cabins with an 80-square-foot deck feature red cedar glulam chassis, cedar and pine framing, and red cedar cladding. Two full-size bunks, dining and sitting areas accommodate four individuals, with a sleeper sofa and folding seating accommodating up to two more. Floor-to-ceiling glass doors frame views of the forest.
The Camper Cabins in the newly constructed Whitetail Woods Regional Park are a hallmark feature intended to create extended patron experiences within the park. The user’s brief discussed numerous options for cabins, including a tree-house. Early community engagement validated the proposed concept based on the idea of touching the earth lightly like a tree-house, but accessible to all. In the park, three camper cabins reimagine the classic tree-house as a “house in the trees” supported by a bath-house a short distance away. Constructed through a local high school construction trades program with supervision from county workers to minimize cost, the cabins are the first three of 20 to be constructed in the parks master plan. As they were planned, the cabins have become a key feature and a community highlight.
As a camper cabin, the structures are simple, efficient and perfectly aligned with the camping experience. The cabins have been designed to utilize the natural environment. Because each cabin is situated in the solar sheltered woods, mechanical cooling has been eliminated and each cabin uses natural ventilation to handle building comfort. Building heating has been minimized by improved insulation for the cabin.