Academic goal :         To explore the meaning of shelter and to design a freestanding residential suite that houses two visitors, providing them with the appropriate setting for meditative retreat, all while seamlessly blending into and preserving a natural environment.     Solution :          This project was limited to 350 square feet so the building was an exercise of elegant planning. It is a simple cabin, partially buried in the ground for both emotional and thermal protection and to literally root the building into the land. Its material pallet is mostly native to the site and includes field stones as well as earth and sod for the foundation and walls and the roof structure is timber construction.  A multi-functioning central wall provides the structure necessary to support the roof and provide lateral bracing while also dividing the interior space, providing shelves and radiating stored heat.    There is a bird habitat and cantilevered stairs on the exterior of the wall that lead up to the vegetated roof, which is a meditation location.  Other multi-function features to note are a sink, placed so it can be used in the kitchen and while exiting the bathroom, a meditation/bed platform and, on the outside, platforms for sitting in the summer and firewood storage in the winter.    
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