Architecture

Sinharaja Exploratorium,wildlife research center, kudawa

Tharusha randula
SLIIT school of Architecture
Sri Lanka

Project idea

Thousands of visitors visit the Sinharaja rainforest each year. Most of the visitors are laymen who yearn to explore the nature and specific flora and fauna that Sinharaja is famous for. Others who visit are the scientists and experts who explore the eco-system for scientific discoveries and developmental purposes. These visitors not only explore the eco-systems and its specific flora and fauna but also interact with the surrounding communities that rely on forest resources for their livelihoods. Some others simply visit Sinharaja for solitude. Unlike the scientific explorers who get into the deep interiors of the forest, the visits of most visitors are limited to the fringe areas of the forest. These fringe areas are considered as the buffer zone of the forest and provide the interface between human habitats and the strict nature reserve. The visits of the casual visitors are mostly limited to this interface by the Department of Forest Conservation. Hence, the proposed project is to located at the fringe/ interface between the community or people’s domain and the conserved forest reservation.

Location

The design was to create a Research center in a buffer zone area which is in waddagala, Kudawa in Sri Lanka. It’s an already disturbed area in the buffer zone. The site is in the Sabargamuwa province that has a tropical
climate with evergreen rain climate. The annual average temperature ranges between from 19°C to 27° C. The high rainfall is depended by to two monsoons: south-west monsoons during May-July and the north-east monsoons during November-January. sunlight intensity of the year is low.


Why sinharaja important to bird researches?

Sinharaja is situated in the middle of the migration route .theres three migration roots in srilanka, Andaman route from Andaman islands, the eastern route from the eastern part of India &western route from the western part of India. Western part route especially for birds from Europe.estern route for birds from China Russia. Andaman route for birds from Andaman islands, Australia. Migration can be defined as a seasonal movement. They come here for breedings. These 3 routes landing to 3 major areas in srilanka. the western route comes to Colombo, the eastern route comes to Jaffna peninsula, Andaman routes come to Trincomalee. This all the routes get together in western part of sinharaja .thats mainly importance of bird studies in sinharaja.

Why this site?

the site is next to the education center. As the strength of the site area closer to bird migration route in sinharaja and lot of other animal movements .this site is directly collaborate with upcoming wildlife research center sinharaja specially design for wildlife researchers and scientific explorers The site is in buffer zone but it’s very important as found hots spot in sinharaja. this place kind of gate for the animals.

Project description

Thematic idea and the .

When it comes to bird nests, it varies according to the tree canopy layers and it has different identities in each layer which differs in the size, shape and the form of the bird’s nest. This unique creature of nature shows the balanced quality of nature. there is a unique bird nest hierarchy. Top to bottom of the forest canopy system bird nest getting small. the bird’s nest size will be big and too deep inside the nest and .material also different. It depends on the bird’s size. the great amazing work created by bird nest .the environment become a peer as well as productivity. It can be seen in sinharaja forest. When time flies the nest will become old to the environment. Still, they build the same structure again and again. by this, we can understand the mutual relationship between the birds and the environment From this, we can see the balance of the environment clearly, by the extract of this wonderful project. research center will also build according to the balance of the environment as birds build their nests. It won’t affect the environment. The special factor that can be taken from a bird nest. they build the nest from a substance that is in the environment and eventually, the nest becomes old and it all a part of nature. The main exception of this project is returning the things that are taken from nature. As way birds nest become a sustainable part of nature. Therefore the design should blend with nature while having the minimum impact on nature. This whole procedure of balancing nature has created the essence of designing a research center. Another special quality of bird-nest is that it is a product of nature which will decay naturally with the time in order to keep the balance of nature. Giving back the things we took from nature as it is without harming the natural environment, is the main intention of this project.

“REVIVAL THROUGH THE BALANCE”

Technical information

The substructure of the research center built by concrete and its fix to the steel superstructure.concrete footing use because of to elevate the building above the existing site level.it helps to keep the existing site and ecosystem. The whole load of the steel superstructure is transferred to the concrete foundation.concrete is getting adopt to the ecosystem and create space to algae and lichens. Substructure includes 1000mm wide square footing and 1000mm deep. Superstructure and substructure fixed with steel fixing unit such as its fix to the concrete column of footing. the reason for the elevate the building to give the sustainable space to the fauna, flora and whole ecosystem
(hydrology, rainwater drainage )

The structure is built by steel such as “I” sections.the structure is precast and its fixing withing site. the steel structure has carried the load in it transfer to the foundation.the steel structure gives the lightweight building. As nature-friendly design wildlife research center lightly touching the ground and its showing as part of nature. the elevated structure gives more natural ventilation, helps to the natural drainage system and helps to natural habitat (fauna &flora). the whole steel structure is weather treated and karotion treated because of humidity level is high in the sinharaja rain forest. Steel is a durable material because of less maintenance and repairs. Also, steel is recyclable .the whole research center is recyclable as the concept of birds nest . (revival true the balance)

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