Rehabilitation & extension of the Arpont shelter
This new and contemporary space is a benchmark which shines in the sun : a distant beacon to guide and reassure the walker or climber.
Our architectural brief involves a sensitive approach, which is as faithful as possible to the natural environment and to structures in the alpine pastures. This is a substantial project, as it involves the doubling of the surface area of the existing shelter, which is currently comprised of two very fine spaces of solid stone construction. The proposed architecture follows the principles of the existing layout, with a larger space to be situated to the west, forming an extension of the ancient moraine.
The three buildings are separate: this is a strong principle of our design, which reflects our commitment to respecting the peace and privacy of the warden and their assistants, and to meeting the needs of large groups, climbers and walkers, who do not necessarily share the same time schedules, nor the same activities. The separation which we propose draws a distinction between a winter space and a summer space. Situated in a raised location on the moraine, the shelter is protected against avalanches : its main façade is directly south-facing.
It integrates naturally into the overall scene, following the pattern of a mountain hamlet. Whilst its dimensions match the existing architecture of traditional mountain farms, the new materials employed are state-of-the-art ; they correspond to current construction methods, as well as meeting requirements for strong and inertialess insulation which will withstand the most severe climates.
The shell of the building is constructed of end-folded aluminium sheet cladding. The vertical joints follow an irregular pattern, arranged randomly like the strata of a rock face. The slate-coloured cladding reflects the colours of the schist veins which overlook the shelter. This shell assumes the function of a “black body”, permitting the maximum accumulation of heat during the day.
Client Parc National de la Vanoise
Area 1250 m²
Budget 1,8 M€
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