PROJECT: Prijsvraag ‘Treehouse competition’  LOCATIE: Stroomdal Schipborgerdiepje (Drenthe, Holland) IN SAMENWERKING MET: EMA-Edoardo Mentegazzi Architect STATUS: succesvol afgerond september 2014.

In the north of the Netherlands, there is a small village called Schipborg. On the outskirts of the village there is a nature reserve wich is called `Schipborger diepdal´(Schipborger river valley). The `Schipborger diep´ is a small river and a large green main of the Netherlands. Running alongside the river valley, there is a forest strip of approximately one kilometer wide. The design of the tree house is situated on the border between the forest and the river valley to get the best of both worlds. There is a variety of wildlife in the forest strip and the river valley wich is unique in the Netherlands. Because of it’s rich watersupply, al kinds of birds find there (sometimes temporary) homes here. The forest is home to among other the Owl, different kinds of rodents and the fox. In the  Netherlands there is a four seasonal mild sea climate with a lot of rain and temperatures ranging between -10 and +25 degrees celcius.

Morphological concept
The form of the treehouse is extracted from a fallen tree wich rests uppon the bough of another tree. The fallen tree becomes a `Fallen Treehouse´. In the forest, a fallen tree becomes the home for all kinds of small animals and micro-organisms. The fallen tree is being re-cycled and re-colonised. A perfect excample of durable use of materials.

Routing concept
Just like a natural fallen tree, the cultivated ‘Fallen Treehouse’ can be seen in three parts; the roots, the stem and the tree top. Wooden frames form the body of the ‘Fallen Treehouse’ corps. They represent the branches of the tree, sometimes close together and sometimes wider apart. The transition from the forest floor all the way up to the treehouse, starts in the roots. Here the vocalpoint is beeing directed upwards by the rhythm of the ‘branches’. Walking upwards, inside the ‘stem’, gradually the branches make way for some views of the foliage world. Halfway the ‘stem’, the foliage world can be experienced in full. The transition continues. Upwards, through the canopy. Then gradually the treetop appears as a hollow bevelled volume. The main vocalpoint slowly becomes the wide open river valley wich reveals itself in al it’s beauty through the treehouse.

Spatial concept
The space inside the ‘Fallen Treehouse’ is a transitional space between two worlds, between the world of the canopy and the river valley. The spatial arangement is designed to enhance this transition by putting the active serving functions (kitchen, shower and toilet) on the canopy side, and the passive stay functions
(dining, sitting, and sleeping) on the river valley side. The idea behind this spatial arangement is that the active serving functions correspond with the activity of light (shining through the leaves), animals and forms of the canopy. As to where the passive stay functions reflect with the meditative flow of the river,
the large scale of wide open landscape and the stars at night. This way, the ‘Fallen Treehouse’ serves as an ultimate place for a young urban couple, to get in touch with nature. This way the young urban couple can recharge there energy and become more in touch with there senses again.

Climatical concept

Climatical, (waste) water and energy concept The ‘Falling Treehouse’ is heated with a rocket stove. This is a very energy effective and environmantally friendly way of heating. The high burning temperature makes a clean burningproces possible. In addition, the rocket stove heats a boiler in order to get warm tapping water for the shower and the kitchen. Water is collected from the roof and stored in the 200 mm cavity of the floorslab. When necessary, a handpump pulls water out of the river in small amounts. A natural cleaningfilter cleans the water for kitchen and shower purposes.