01.Oct.2014 Atlier N2K, Parisa Navidi, Cuc Nguyen, Nathan Klein – Winner of the 2014 MNPG Arch Competition

Shaping with that of elements of a snowflake’s contour, the Trail House would be a welcome addition to the rugged terrain and paths that make up this atypical part of Australia. With sweeping views and the functionality of sedentary and traveler needs, this creates a lasting, yet absorbing architectural feat.

Having proposed to be built with concrete, timber, metal panels and glass for the façade, the thermal mass and structure of the Trail House is well accustomed to the varying climate of snow and sun in the Snowies. The materials are all locally manufactured, allowing for the swift construction with local participation.

The inspiration of the Trail House, came from the the trails of the area and the purpose of the design serves the adventurer as well as the vacationeer. As there are two buildings, they are connected with a submerged tunnel, forming a unitised form. While the plan pushes the boundaries of the site’s vernacular, the Trail House facilitates a purposeful usage and develops itself as a hub for other new neighbours. There can be a lot said for the understanding of the top and base of thought that shows the building as both an innovative construction, that doesn’t suggest imposition on the area’s current culture.

What makes the winning entry really stand out, is the ability of Atelier N2K to integrate traditional activities of the Snowies, a breadth of Australian architectural aesthetic, nature and modernity into a house that creates a memorable vantage for visitors and residents alike. There is no disregard for space either, by separating the uses, without detracting from the walkable feel, it is clear that the Trail House is in iconic structure that is a benefit to the typical Snowies’ outdoors hut ecology.

Atelier N2K:

The hub is located off of the boundary of New South Wales and Victoria at an intersection of 5 or more hiking trails and oversees the Murray River along a hillside. The front of the hub faces north to take advantage of the northern sunlight.

The hub was designed for two types of users 1) temporary user and 2) permanent user.

Temporary user: skiers, hikers, campers and sightseers. The duration of this user’s stay is ranges from a day to a couple of months. For this user, the hub provides a resting point, a shelter.

Permanent user: a keeper who maintains the hub and welcomes temporary users.

The hub consists of 2 stories, the first floor consists of a bedroom for the keeper, a bathroom, a storage, a living room, a dining room, and kitchen, whereas the second floor provides an additional bedroom for the temporary user. The total square footage of the first floor total 850 sq and the second floor total 150 sq. An outdoor deck approximately 1000 sq is provided for outdoor enjoyment.

  • paul

    Those background shots are not Australia?
    I know this territory pretty well and I’ll fall of my chair if someone can demonstrate that those background shots are from anywhere within 5000kms of the competition site.
    Looks more like somewhere in Western Europe to me.

  • Mafalda Carmona

    Congratulations! It is indeed a very interesting and realistic/ feasible approach. It will add a feature to Snowies and to the scenery to all adventurers.

Congratulations to participants of the 2016.

  • MNPG Arch is an international competition working to improve architecture every two years. Awarding a first place prize, as well as honorable mentions in Sustainability, Resourcefullness, Best Practice and Most Innovative.
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