| 10 : 00 – 24 May 2018 |
Bulgarian design firm Lusio Architects in collaboration with Ivanka Ivanova and Krassimir Krumov design a energy-efficient, smart shelter to be assembled on Vitosha Mountain in Bulgaria.
Winner of Shelter of the future – Architecture of 2050 competition, the structure can be easily transported by helicopter and assembled on site on variable landscape. Envisioned as an oasis to hikers and tourists, the innovative mountain shelter transforms into a beacon when weather conditions are bad.
The winning proposal by Lusio along with collaborating architects covered the critical issue of vandalism, which was beyond the scope of work enlisted for the entries. The self-sustaining mountain shelter also incorporates lights and signal system which can connect mountaineers stuck in bad weather to the nearest rescue team.
Camouflaged with the surroundings © Lusio Architects
From the Architects –
A smart mountain shelter design will settle in Bulgaria’s mountains next fall.
An innovative mountain shelter will be placed in Vitosha, Bulgaria in the fall of 2018. The winning project in the competition “Architecture of 2050” was designed by architects Maria Staynova, Violetka Slavova, Ivanka Ivanova, Krassimir Krumov and Daniela Slavova.
Proposed site location map © Lusio Architects
The masterminds behind the initiative and the competition are Andreya Momerin and his team at BRING.bg. They were inspired to commission and test a prototype shelter that would correspond to the standards of the near future. The competition brief called for a cutting-edge design in terms of building technology, energy and sustainability, requiring a zero-net energy modular structure, that can be produced in a lab and put in place by a helicopter.
Floor plan © Lusio Architects
Ease of transportation © Lusio Architects
Design proposal –
The winning proposal was selected after a three-stage vote by a renowned jury, by passionate mountaineers and by the children of Bulgaria, its eventual users. It was selected not only because of its technological innovation, but because it solved a critical issue that lay beyond the scope of the brief. Through deep-dive research techniques, the design team uncovered a hidden, but critical problem: vandalism. Although mountain shelters basically serve for saving lives in fierce weather conditions, it appeared that a lot of them are destroyed, hence putting mountaineers at high risk. So, if the shelter is to last in time, it has to protect itself first.
Evolution of shape for the shelter © Lusio Architects
This insight informed the physical and digital side of the concept design. The shelter is normally “hidden” in its environment via aluminium. The coating reflects its ambiance, aiming not to attract unwanted visitors. The shelter’s body is inspired by the aeroplane industry and is extremely lightweight.
East facade of the shelter © Lusio Architects
In case of bad weather conditions, the shelter transforms into a beacon, with lights and sound that make it extremely easy to find even in the thickest of fogs. In this mode of operation, a person walking inside the shelter would automatically activate the floor heating and video connection with the mountain rescue service.
Innovative energy management incase of emergencies © Lusio Architects
Accommodation capacity © Lusio Architects
Rendered section shows windows at low position © Lusio Architects
The low-positioned windows would invite him to sit on the warm floor. Also in case that the group is large, there are integrated hammocks into the walls which are easily pulled out. Also, water and shoe-drying containers are placed at the entrance.
Hammocks integrated into the shelter © Lusio Architects
Energy production –
The shelter produces energy through solar panels and a wind turbine and stores it into a high-capacity battery; its use is prioritized only for emergency cases and critical life support.
Inbuilt sensors –
Sensors for weather conditions and occupancy govern the shelter’s different modes. If threatening human behaviour is detected, a signal is immediately sent to the local mountain service and a video connection is established.
Sketch – Energy production © Lusio Architects
The design is planned to be ready by the summer of 2018 and installed soon afterwards. The structure is divided into modules which will be transported by a helicopter and assembled on site. This makes the design easily scalable and transportable. If the prototype is successful, another one will be commissioned by the Bulgarian Antarctic Institute for their base in Antarctica.
Division of modules © Lusio Architects
North facade of the shelter © Lusio Architects
This is the third First Prize in an architectural competition for the young international design team who recently founded Lusio Architects. The design studio is located in Sofia, Bulgaria and looking to expand also in Denmark, where part of the team is currently based.
Project details –
Project Name – Smart Mountain Shelter
Location – Vitosha Mountain, Bulgaria
Architect – Lusio architects | www.lusio.bg/
Lead Architect’s – Violetka Slavova, Maria Staynova
Collaborating Architects – Ivanka Ivanova, Krassimir Krumov
Client – bring.bg
Project type – Mountain shelter, Emergency shelter, Portable cabin
Award – Winner of ‘Shelter of the future – Architecture of 2050’ competition
Completion Year – 2018
Photography Credits – © Lusio Architects