Cabin in the Woods is Supported by Salvaged Tree Forks

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This modern cabin was built in Victoria, AU’s Central Highlands region built by Paul Morgan Architects. It is called Trunk House, due to the fact that its structural framework is made of tree forks, which is a part of the tree usually discarded by the commercial logging industry. The rest of the cabin is also made of wood harvested from the building site.
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Trunk House is located in a forest of Stringybark trees. The initial idea of the architects was to somehow also incorporate sheep and kangaroo bones into the structure, since these can easily be found on nearby farmland and forests, but soon gave up that idea when they discovered that tree forks have great natural load-bearing properties due to their massive inherent strength.

All the tree forks were sourced from the surrounding forest floors and farmland. They were also pre-seasoned prior to using them as building blocks, due to their age. Once the building began, the forks were joined to straight columns with internal metal plates. The builders also added an internal column with radiating beams, which gave the completed triangulated system great inherent strength.

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As the construction process progressed, the builders brought a mobile milling machine to the site, which was used to mill the Stringybark wood, and cure it into boards on location. This greatly reduced the ecological and carbon footprint of the construction process, since transportation costs were kept to a minimum and only locally sourced wood was used during the building process.

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The interior of the cabin is kept open via large wrap around windows, which brings the occupants closer to nature. The house is also designed in such a way that it blends almost seamlessly into its forest surroundings, while it is also a great example of construction that makes do with what it available on site. The owners of the cabin will also be commissioning Paul Morgan Architects to build a main residence close to the cabin in the near future.

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  • Monica Crosby Donohoe

    Spectacular!

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