Parametric Design System For Alpine Conditions

Alexandra Kanovitsova
Warsaw University of Technology, (Politechnika Warszawska), Faculty of Architecture, Warszawa

Project idea

Parametrization of design process gives an advantages of adaptability, flexibility and diversity to a possible resulting design outcomes. Whole process is structured in algorithm which is followed by designer and where he can perform desired modifications. I tried to apply this design strategy to a design of a mountain shelter, which can be adapted to required conditions and needs.

Project description

Design proposal of Kežmarská chata is based on algorithm for designing an universal alpine shelter which can be adapted to various locations by modification of pre-set parameters, which was developed as a part o my thesis research. Design was developed to detail of architectural study. Object is located in the mountan range of High Tatras in Slovakia. Visual design is result of a complex weather analysis of the location and implementation of passive house design strategies into creative process.
During my research I found out that rather than universal alpine shelter is possible to create an universal procedure for creating a shelter that would possess certain qualities. Then it is possible to adapt design to a specific location, however location needs to meet certain requirements as specified in first chapter. This is crucial for developing a passive house design strategies, which were set as objectives in this case. After analysing mountain conditions in example case location of High Tatras, I came to conclusion that this approach is suitable for alpine conditions and can help to efficiently use natural sources for energy generation and heating.

Technical information

In my final design, I produced a large mountain shelter or a hut with a possibility of accommodating 38 people in various room types with beds or in a rooms intended for a stay in a sleeping bags. Stuff of a shelter has a separated zone with a bedrooms for 9 people and common room. Object contains fully equipped kitchen and common dining and social space for 70 people with a possibility of outdoor dinning on a terrace in summer. Hygienic facilities are provided on both levels. All technical equipment of an object is located in underground level together with a garage and storage.
Shelter is designed to be as energy efficient as possible. It uses solar energy which is stored in a battery whenever possible as well as various types of passive heating of interior space. Wastewater management is solved by ecological cleaning system. I tried to choose materials and types of constructions which are sustainable, ecological but at the same time not difficult to transport and assemble in a remote locations.
In order to make construction fast but keep it stiff and durable I decided to use CLT (cross-laminated timber) panels for it, whenever it is possible. . Panels are prefabricated in factory and then can be transported by helicopter and assembled on site, with already applied thermal insulation. External walls consist of CLT load bearing wall and an insulation box, which is placed on the external side, minimizing the cold bridge and there is also a layer of studs on the insulation box that supports facade material. Such construction needs to be covered with some weather resistant material. After studying similar objects in mountains, I decided that some metal cladding system should be used. Aluminium fasade systems have very good properties, panels are light and application is quick, therefore they seem to be ideal for my case. Cladding of a building of my shelter’s size can be done in several days.

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