TREE HOUSE PARK DESIGN COMPETITION

“A tree house is ironically a house without a foundation, that embraces a tree and is rooted to the ground through that tree. The house literally sways in the sky, representing freedom in modern life, but is profoundly grounded in ironic duality. Designs may address this duality between sky and ground as well as other dualities such as adventure-security, entropy-stasis, home-wild, and the contradiction of inhabiting a living place that reshapes your world and in turn shapes your choices.”

This international competition calls on young architects around the world to envision a new natural environment based on living in forests and amongst trees, with the tree house dwelling as the focus. The “Tree House Park” competition seeks to extend design insight into architecture embedded and in harmony with the natural world, with trees and tree habitation as the focus of the ecological design.

The competition organized by the Istanbul-based GAD Foundation in cooperation with Ege Yapi, and Casper Computer is open to all young architects who seek to explore the ecological possibilities of architecture for the 21st century.

The competition is set in Istanbul, Turkey, in a forested area in the district of Cekmekoy, a low-density residential zone on the Asian side of the city. It is home to 265,000 of Istanbul’s 15.5 million residents and has witnessed rapid urban growth in the 2000s and 2010s. Cekmekoy is today a mix of low and high-density housing, but also contains natural areas with wildlife and indigenous forest. The “Tree House Park” competition seeks designs for architecture in this mix of built and natural environments. The competition calls for projects to envision architecture for a tree house, as well as urban life embedded within trees. We seek proposals for design ideas for a tree house and the surrounding forested area in the rich potential of the forest as a social and activity zone for a neighboring residential property and community.

This competition proposes a generation of architectural ideas for tree houses and also for different activities for a forested area that could also be suitable for implementation in protected green areas throughout the city as an example of the conversation of nature within cities.

The tree house in the modern period is an architecture typology distinct from the use of structures in trees built by prehistoric and indigenous peoples. In the premodern period, these structures above the ground primarily offered protection from wild animals, enemies, and the flooding that was hostile to human existence. The architecture of tree structures camouflaged among the leaves by indigenous people was an outgrowth of indigenous structures raised above the ground on stilts and struts. As such, this architecture has an architectural language derived from vernacular construction and the availability and application of timber resources in forested zones, primarily in tropic and subtropic climates. But over the last hundred years, modern tree houses have transformed to provide a spatial and sensual experience of nature as a building type with its own architectural style. An architectonic development of the tree house has resulted in numerous options for building in trees. Stay rods, fasteners, bolts, belts, and cables are now used with timber to build modern tree houses. As such, part of the task in this competition is to take a position in the design of structures in trees and forests. Competitors should in the design address the task of engaging a living foundation, the unstable parameters of nature, and user/habitant.

THE SITE

Cekmekoy is a municipal district in the Asian suburbs of Istanbul, Türkiye. Historically, it was a rural town on the periphery of Istanbul, with a population of 1.938 in 1980. It became a district in 2009

having separated from the municipality of Umraniye. Also, the towns of Omerli, Alemdag, and Tasdelen villages, 17 neighborhoods, and four other towns joined the Cekmekoy district in the same year to create the borders of the present municipality. In 2019 the population density of Cekmekoy was 1,763/km, making it one of the least dense districts of the metropolitan city of Istanbul.

Forest: Coniferous pine forest, bushes, and grass

Developers: Ege Yapi and Casper

The plot: 19000 m2 Forested Area

PROGRAM

The main theme of the competition is based on the idea of a “Tree House Park” that will host a number of tree houses and activities inside a forested area. The forest area will be organized as a park with outdoor activities such as a walking path and physical activity zones to stimulate exploration and discovery. The tree houses and primary park activities are envisioned to be in and on a network of walking paths and spaces. The design strategy of the competition will be to retain the natural materials and character of the forested area as a nature reserve. The competition calls for a non-invasive approach to the design of the park, where ecosystems are supported and new construction minimized.

WINNERS 

WINNERS 

WINNERS 

WINNERS 

WINNERS 

Team 41 NE

ANGIE AGUILERA

M.Arch + MSc. B&Arch Eng.

STATEMENT OF INTENT
Tree House Park Design - GAD Foundation
41NE
Introduction
“The human race is losing its respect for nature, and architecture can play a key role in healing this relationship”
At the core of many issues facing the world, there lies the concern that humankind has lost its respect for nature. Architecture can play a key role in healing this relationship. This can happen with the idea of architecture becoming a vessel where humankind can re-establish this lost respect; perhaps, this could be the trees. Further to this, architecture can not only act as an example of how to exist in our world without further damaging it, but also inspire us in how to do the same.
Aim
Our aim for Tree House Park will focus on achieving ecological harmony and establishing a desirable location within the immediate urban environment of Çekmeköy. We intend to implement our understanding of vernacular architecture to realise a project that is truly distinct to the site and tailored to the community who will use it. The architecture will act as bridge between people and nature whilst supporting the needs of both the people and the ecology of the site. Aiming for this symbiosis, the project will ideally inspire people to develop a profound appreciation for nature and in turn, embed this into the culture of the local community.
This is critical to focus on, especially given people’s intensified yearning for the outdoors as a side effect of the Coronavirus pandemic. Coupled with this is the issue that Istanbul’s green areas are rapidly decreasing due to urbanisation (Chengiz et al. 2019). This places a heavy importance on the remaining green spaces to become desirable locations within the city which both attract people to nature and encourage a connection between them.
Strategy
We understand that there is already a defined atmosphere within the park, which we seek to not only capture but enhance with our architectural intervention. We hope to encourage people to explore the park sensorially and embrace the natural phenomena and to discover its enchantment.
Our proposal for Tree House Park will ideally become a leading architectural example of harmonical coexistence between nature and the built environment. With an activated park space within the urban environment of Çekmeköy, we hope to establish a strong value for nature within the immediate community.
Conclusion
We wish to conclude with an analogy that reflects on our belief that tree houses can become an integral architectural typology of our future.
Before the typology of alpine architecture, the mountains were inaccessible and believed to be inhabited by dragons and demons. The introduction of alpine architecture offered people the feeling of safety to venture into the mountains. This has culminated in centuries of exploration and discovery; forming mankind’s profound connection to the mountains. In the same way in which architecture played a key role in forming the strong relationship between man and mountain, we believe it can rekindle the relationship between man and tree - and hence help heal our lost respect for nature.
Reference
Cengiz, S. Atmis, E. and Görmüs, S. 2019. The impact of economic growth oriented development policies on landscape changes in Istanbul Province in Turkey, Land Use Policy, 87, p.104086.

EMMA AMIDEI

M.Arch

STATEMENT OF INTENT
Tree House Park Design - GAD Foundation
41NE
Introduction
“The human race is losing its respect for nature, and architecture can play a key role in healing this relationship”
At the core of many issues facing the world, there lies the concern that humankind has lost its respect for nature. Architecture can play a key role in healing this relationship. This can happen with the idea of architecture becoming a vessel where humankind can re-establish this lost respect; perhaps, this could be the trees. Further to this, architecture can not only act as an example of how to exist in our world without further damaging it, but also inspire us in how to do the same.
Aim
Our aim for Tree House Park will focus on achieving ecological harmony and establishing a desirable location within the immediate urban environment of Çekmeköy. We intend to implement our understanding of vernacular architecture to realise a project that is truly distinct to the site and tailored to the community who will use it. The architecture will act as bridge between people and nature whilst supporting the needs of both the people and the ecology of the site. Aiming for this symbiosis, the project will ideally inspire people to develop a profound appreciation for nature and in turn, embed this into the culture of the local community.
This is critical to focus on, especially given people’s intensified yearning for the outdoors as a side effect of the Coronavirus pandemic. Coupled with this is the issue that Istanbul’s green areas are rapidly decreasing due to urbanisation (Chengiz et al. 2019). This places a heavy importance on the remaining green spaces to become desirable locations within the city which both attract people to nature and encourage a connection between them.
Strategy
We understand that there is already a defined atmosphere within the park, which we seek to not only capture but enhance with our architectural intervention. We hope to encourage people to explore the park sensorially and embrace the natural phenomena and to discover its enchantment.
Our proposal for Tree House Park will ideally become a leading architectural example of harmonical coexistence between nature and the built environment. With an activated park space within the urban environment of Çekmeköy, we hope to establish a strong value for nature within the immediate community.
Conclusion
We wish to conclude with an analogy that reflects on our belief that tree houses can become an integral architectural typology of our future.
Before the typology of alpine architecture, the mountains were inaccessible and believed to be inhabited by dragons and demons. The introduction of alpine architecture offered people the feeling of safety to venture into the mountains. This has culminated in centuries of exploration and discovery; forming mankind’s profound connection to the mountains. In the same way in which architecture played a key role in forming the strong relationship between man and mountain, we believe it can rekindle the relationship between man and tree - and hence help heal our lost respect for nature.
Reference
Cengiz, S. Atmis, E. and Görmüs, S. 2019. The impact of economic growth oriented development policies on landscape changes in Istanbul Province in Turkey, Land Use Policy, 87, p.104086.

OLIVER PERRETT

B.I.Arch (Hons)

STATEMENT OF INTENT
Tree House Park Design - GAD Foundation
41NE
Introduction
“The human race is losing its respect for nature, and architecture can play a key role in healing this relationship”
At the core of many issues facing the world, there lies the concern that humankind has lost its respect for nature. Architecture can play a key role in healing this relationship. This can happen with the idea of architecture becoming a vessel where humankind can re-establish this lost respect; perhaps, this could be the trees. Further to this, architecture can not only act as an example of how to exist in our world without further damaging it, but also inspire us in how to do the same.
Aim
Our aim for Tree House Park will focus on achieving ecological harmony and establishing a desirable location within the immediate urban environment of Çekmeköy. We intend to implement our understanding of vernacular architecture to realise a project that is truly distinct to the site and tailored to the community who will use it. The architecture will act as bridge between people and nature whilst supporting the needs of both the people and the ecology of the site. Aiming for this symbiosis, the project will ideally inspire people to develop a profound appreciation for nature and in turn, embed this into the culture of the local community.
This is critical to focus on, especially given people’s intensified yearning for the outdoors as a side effect of the Coronavirus pandemic. Coupled with this is the issue that Istanbul’s green areas are rapidly decreasing due to urbanisation (Chengiz et al. 2019). This places a heavy importance on the remaining green spaces to become desirable locations within the city which both attract people to nature and encourage a connection between them.
Strategy
We understand that there is already a defined atmosphere within the park, which we seek to not only capture but enhance with our architectural intervention. We hope to encourage people to explore the park sensorially and embrace the natural phenomena and to discover its enchantment.
Our proposal for Tree House Park will ideally become a leading architectural example of harmonical coexistence between nature and the built environment. With an activated park space within the urban environment of Çekmeköy, we hope to establish a strong value for nature within the immediate community.
Conclusion
We wish to conclude with an analogy that reflects on our belief that tree houses can become an integral architectural typology of our future.
Before the typology of alpine architecture, the mountains were inaccessible and believed to be inhabited by dragons and demons. The introduction of alpine architecture offered people the feeling of safety to venture into the mountains. This has culminated in centuries of exploration and discovery; forming mankind’s profound connection to the mountains. In the same way in which architecture played a key role in forming the strong relationship between man and mountain, we believe it can rekindle the relationship between man and tree - and hence help heal our lost respect for nature.
Reference
Cengiz, S. Atmis, E. and Görmüs, S. 2019. The impact of economic growth oriented development policies on landscape changes in Istanbul Province in Turkey, Land Use Policy, 87, p.104086.

CARLA BONILLA HUAROC & SAMIA KAYYALI

CARLA BONILLA HUAROC

M.Arch + Graphic Designer

STATEMENT OF INTENT
Tree House Park Design - GAD Foundation
CARLA BONILLA HUAROC

Our project will propose a tree house that is a communal co-op living space. Our choice to develop this type of group housing project comes from two ways of reading our site and the prompt. The first being our reading of Cekmekoy as a site that is both a mi x of housing and an indigenous forest, and seeing a coop group house as a microcosm of the cit y’s characteristics, as a dwelling area with communal and indigenous natural sites. The second comes from the d esire to represent the ethics and the principles that are guiding the prompt to create a tree house with a focus on architecture with ecological concerns. We feel that a communal way of living fosters the relational ethics of living at an intersection of an urban and natural site.
Our proposal will act as a network of units of different programs that is responding to the site. From the analysis photographs we aim to identify and extract patterns of forestations and tree placements, and mimic or respond to them in the form and composition of the units and network in order for the architecture to sit in harmony with existing conditions of the site. Secondly, we will focus on the creation of a living porous façade that provides a spectrum of openness to outside nature vs being in an enclosed space Creates a living façade that encourages the habitation of non-human species/ elements on the site.
While the prompt encourages that the roots of our architecture be dependent on the trees we would like to propose that our architecture acts on the site as an extension of existing trees with non-invasive structural approach to the living trees that encourages an interdependence relationship between the architecture and nature. An interdependent relationship between architecture and the natural environment is how we believe we should move for ward in our approach to ecological architecture.
Carla Bonilla-Huaroc and Samia Kayyali are
both recent graduates from Weitzman School of Design at University of Pennsylvania. In their approach to design and create ecological architecture, they focus on bringing in critical research and an in depth understanding of both the site and the prompt in order to create a design response that attempts to push the boundaries of the discipline through form and through its role in a cross-disciplinary context. Carla Bonilla is a juni or architect at Gehry Partners, and has recently won the adaptability HOME award. She brings in her design expertise and experimental approach to the team. Samia Kayyali is a recent MArch + MLA graduate from University of Pennsylvania and is currently working as an environmental researcher at e.construct. She brings in her research and landscape expertise to the team.

SAMIA KAYYALI

M.Arch + Landscape Architecture

STATEMENT OF INTENT
Tree House Park Design - GAD Foundation
SAMIA KAYYALI

Our project will propose a tree house that is a communal co-op living space. Our choice to develop this type of group housing project comes from two ways of reading our site and the prompt. The first being our reading of Cekmekoy as a site that is both a mi x of housing and an indigenous forest, and seeing a coop group house as a microcosm of the cit y’s characteristics, as a dwelling area with communal and indigenous natural sites. The second comes from the d esire to represent the ethics and the principles that are guiding the prompt to create a tree house with a focus on architecture with ecological concerns. We feel that a communal way of living fosters the relational ethics of living at an intersection of an urban and natural site.
Our proposal will act as a network of units of different programs that is responding to the site. From the analysis photographs we aim to identify and extract patterns of forestations and tree placements, and mimic or respond to them in the form and composition of the units and network in order for the architecture to sit in harmony with existing conditions of the site. Secondly, we will focus on the creation of a living porous façade that provides a spectrum of openness to outside nature vs being in an enclosed space Creates a living façade that encourages the habitation of non-human species/ elements on the site.
While the prompt encourages that the roots of our architecture be dependent on the trees we would like to propose that our architecture acts on the site as an extension of existing trees with non-invasive structural approach to the living trees that encourages an interdependence relationship between the architecture and nature. An interdependent relationship between architecture and the natural environment is how we believe we should move for ward in our approach to ecological architecture.
Carla Bonilla-Huaroc and Samia Kayyali are
both recent graduates from Weitzman School of Design at University of Pennsylvania. In their approach to design and create ecological architecture, they focus on bringing in critical research and an in depth understanding of both the site and the prompt in order to create a design response that attempts to push the boundaries of the discipline through form and through its role in a cross-disciplinary context. Carla Bonilla is a juni or architect at Gehry Partners, and has recently won the adaptability HOME award. She brings in her design expertise and experimental approach to the team. Samia Kayyali is a recent MArch + MLA graduate from University of Pennsylvania and is currently working as an environmental researcher at e.construct. She brings in her research and landscape expertise to the team.

ALEJANDRO MORENO GUERRERO

ALEJANDRO MORENO GUERRERO

M.Arch

STATEMENT OF INTENT
Tree House Park Design - GAD Foundation
ALEJANDRO MORENO GUERRERO
I have come up with three postures to develop my creative architectural process through a brief experience in architecture and arts. The first point is social responsibility. Besides being constituted by constant technological updating and aesthetic studies, the architectural planning must be directed to the social innovation; this point is understood not only as of the human factor but also its natural context. The second point is the transdisciplinary character, conferred by the inter and multi-disciplinary nature of architecture, always searching for an integral form of knowledge not to make it more complex but more complete, extending its stimuli and scope. The third is experimentation that lies in the importance of trial and error—searching for multiple answers from different perspectives, making successes and mistakes in each of them, and resulting in a range of possible solutions to the same problem, feeding back into the design process.
Along with these ideals, and with my strong devotion to the professions for these purposes, I want to emphasize my strong interest in being part of the Tree House Park. In this way, I can continue to learn and grow as a professional and contribute my knowledge to a global community concerned with sustainable architecture development. By attaching my portfolio, I hope to demonstrate my skills to be part of the project as well as to demonstrate my values as an architect and a person.

TEAM JPAG

RALPH NASSIF

M.Arch

STATEMENT OF INTENT
Tree House Park Design - GAD Foundation
RALPH NASSIF
JPAG is an award-winning group of creative minds, architects and artist operating within the field of architecture and digital art.
The Atelier is led by Jean-Paul El Hachem, 29; architect, visual artist and university faculty member at the Lebanese American University-LAU’s school of architecture and design.
Our collaborative and research-based design methods, gives us a unique approach in our form and function way of thinking. We believe that in order to deal with today’s challenges, architecture should be thought in its every aspect, from the big to the smallest detail.
Sustainability and urban design are keys features in our perspective, as each project has its effect on its surrounding no matter how small it is.
Our work is storytelling, mixing the pragmatic with the utopian. We craft volumes into something more than a boring block of material, but a sensational piece of art.
JPAG’s success over the years has been the testament to the work ethic, with projects earning prestigious awards in visual art, often as the first and only Middle Eastern winner. These awards and references from the likes of Archdaily, Designboom, Architizer and Slanted magazine have given us the chance to tell our story for different audiences of thousands of people all over the world.
We believe that with the present diversity of young creatives who’s shaping our practice from sustainable designers, urban planners and architects, we design at the highest standards and we can offer an exceptional and timeless vision to the Foundation.
The Tree house park competition is great way for us to prove our capabilities and share our innovative yet simple ideas with you.

JEAN PAUL EL HACHEM

M.Arch

STATEMENT OF INTENT
Tree House Park Design - GAD Foundation
JEAN PAUL EL HACHEM

JPAG is an award-winning group of creative minds, architects and artist operating within the field of architecture and digital art.
The Atelier is led by Jean-Paul El Hachem, 29; architect, visual artist and university faculty member at the Lebanese American University-LAU’s school of architecture and design.
Our collaborative and research-based design methods, gives us a unique approach in our form and function way of thinking. We believe that in order to deal with today’s challenges, architecture should be thought in its every aspect, from the big to the smallest detail.
Sustainability and urban design are keys features in our perspective, as each project has its effect on its surrounding no matter how small it is.
Our work is storytelling, mixing the pragmatic with the utopian. We craft volumes into something more than a boring block of material, but a sensational piece of art.
JPAG’s success over the years has been the testament to the work ethic, with projects earning prestigious awards in visual art, often as the first and only Middle Eastern winner. These awards and references from the likes of Archdaily, Designboom, Architizer and Slanted magazine have given us the chance to tell our story for different audiences of thousands of people all over the world.
We believe that with the present diversity of young creatives who’s shaping our practice from sustainable designers, urban planners and architects, we design at the highest standards and we can offer an exceptional and timeless vision to the Foundation.
The Tree house park competition is great way for us to prove our capabilities and share our innovative yet simple ideas with you.

DHRUV SHAH & SNEHA DHANUKA

DHRUV SHAH

M.Arch

STATEMENT OF INTENT
Tree House Park Design - GAD Foundation
DHRUV SHAH

Since the very beginning of our architectural education and following professional careers, the question of how to create a sustainable utopia has come up every now and then. Over the period of a few years, the dream of an escapist reality turned into an experience of facing bitter truths about the current design and construction world.

But that has only motivated us even more, to try and push on harder, educate ourselves and the people involved in the process (the clients, site teams etc.) and rather than waiting for this massive sustainability revolution to sweep up the world, create smaller changes wherever our potential allowed us to.

Sustainability according to us is not a parallel lifestyle, composed of an alien system of designing and making things. For us, the intent has always been to reflect and come up with ways of incorporating sustainable practices into the norm. The smallest of changes in the building and design processes can make a huge difference on the impact that any design proposal will have on the planet upon realization.

With the rising need to design and come up with low impact solutions to architectural briefs, the tree houses will become a beacon that will lead by example. Through the design proposal we intend to create a tree house park that on one hand acts as an essential escape from the hustle bustle of the city, but also on the other hand provides a handbook of alternative designing and building to be followed not just by architects in Turkey, but the design community worldwide.

The intent is to design a self-sustained community, which can have the lowest possible impact footprint on the site as well as its surrounding areas. We intend to use only natural materials, preferably found locally, to the maximum extent that we can, and integrate technological inputs to enhance the working, experience, and maintenance of the units, including the processes like energy generation, water conservation and waste management. Further, we aim towards incorporating methods such as farming which will help the users to be fully independent and create a sustainable lifestyle for themselves at the same time.

The design will incorporate the existing site features, the vegetation etc. and will be able to respond sensitively to the climate factors, smartly adapting its enclosure to accommodate, receive or repel the external forces of the elements. The interior space itself will be designed as a flexible canvas that can be elaborated into multiple functions, thereby adding experiential value to the same space. Through the flexibility of the internal as well as the external, the proposed units will exhibit various design expressions over a period of time.

In conclusion, we firmly believe that we have the potential and desire to create a remarkable design which would further act as a motivation to move towards a sustainable world. Given the opportunity, we are certain that we have the capability to realize the design in a usable structure.

SNEHA DHANUKA

M.Arch

STATEMENT OF INTENT
Tree House Park Design - GAD Foundation
SNEHA DHANUKA

Since the very beginning of our architectural education and following professional careers, the question of how to create a sustainable utopia has come up every now and then. Over the period of a few years, the dream of an escapist reality turned into an experience of facing bitter truths about the current design and construction world.

But that has only motivated us even more, to try and push on harder, educate ourselves and the people involved in the process (the clients, site teams etc.) and rather than waiting for this massive sustainability revolution to sweep up the world, create smaller changes wherever our potential allowed us to.

Sustainability according to us is not a parallel lifestyle, composed of an alien system of designing and making things. For us, the intent has always been to reflect and come up with ways of incorporating sustainable practices into the norm. The smallest of changes in the building and design processes can make a huge difference on the impact that any design proposal will have on the planet upon realization.

With the rising need to design and come up with low impact solutions to architectural briefs, the tree houses will become a beacon that will lead by example. Through the design proposal we intend to create a tree house park that on one hand acts as an essential escape from the hustle bustle of the city, but also on the other hand provides a handbook of alternative designing and building to be followed not just by architects in Turkey, but the design community worldwide.

The intent is to design a self-sustained community, which can have the lowest possible impact footprint on the site as well as its surrounding areas. We intend to use only natural materials, preferably found locally, to the maximum extent that we can, and integrate technological inputs to enhance the working, experience, and maintenance of the units, including the processes like energy generation, water conservation and waste management. Further, we aim towards incorporating methods such as farming which will help the users to be fully independent and create a sustainable lifestyle for themselves at the same time.

The design will incorporate the existing site features, the vegetation etc. and will be able to respond sensitively to the climate factors, smartly adapting its enclosure to accommodate, receive or repel the external forces of the elements. The interior space itself will be designed as a flexible canvas that can be elaborated into multiple functions, thereby adding experiential value to the same space. Through the flexibility of the internal as well as the external, the proposed units will exhibit various design expressions over a period of time.

In conclusion, we firmly believe that we have the potential and desire to create a remarkable design which would further act as a motivation to move towards a sustainable world. Given the opportunity, we are certain that we have the capability to realize the design in a usable structure.

CHAI YI YANG

CHAI YI YANG

M.Arch

STATEMENT OF INTENT
Tree House Park Design - GAD Foundation
CHAI YI YANG
LANTERNS IN THE WOODS
Enlightening the Convergence of Culture & Nature
A treehouse is an emblem of living upon nature. It is a latent form of architecture that represents how people used to live harmoniously alongside nature and its wilderness. Situated at the green heart within Cekmekoy, the project envisions an ecological approach as a Tree House Park to integrate nature as part of the urban life, akin to a breath of fresh air into the fast-paced urbanity. Nevertheless, how could we bridge the manmade artifices and the nature that we inhabit as a collective?
In this proposal, culture is anchored to be that bridge to raise the coexistence between artifices, nature, and people. Inspired by the convergence of cultural identity by the Turkish Mosaic Lamp, the design of the series of treehouses will resemble a tapestry of lanterns in the woods. These treehouses provide an envelope to the existing trees with lightweight and minimal supporting structures, touches the landscape lightly. They camouflage within the environment during the day, and glow amid the greens during the night.
The territory of treehouses is further celebrated through a diverse range of modules, such as exploring trails, suspended bridge, playscape, observatory platforms, yoga/ meditation zones, amphitheater and so on. Without damaging the ecosystem and wildlife, the imprint network of architectonics upon the pre-existed natural fabric provides a journey of wonder to access the landscape. In conclusion, the project has created an explorative realm through the embrace of the collectivism among the artifices, nature, and culture.
Background Context
Situated at the Suburban periphery of Istanbul, Cemekoy as a low-dense district is a combination of residential area and lush indigenous forests. Corresponding to the regional urban growth of Cemekoy, the project seeks the state of equilibrium and spirituality between artifices and nature anticipating the emerging urbanization. As the belief in the local culture is always a medium to evoke the resonance of existential consciousness of oneself correlated to the living environment, the design intends to bridge the cultural identity with the natural landscape to raise such sonority. Conclusively, the treehouse park embraces Cemekoy with a new layer of colour, a new place of ecstasy, and a new cradle of inspiration.
Inhabiting Nature
Wondering about the relationship between the traces of human living and nature, the treehouse park design sets as an experimental and empirical design approach to address the concern. Designed in lightweight and almost transient structures, the treehouses are raised on multiple levels and built upon the trees to comprehend an idea of negotiation with nature inhabit. Unlike the regular buildings which always take a footprint and scrape away part of nature, they leave the upper hand and show a gesture of acknowledgement to nature. Also, although they are relatively homogenized within the forest, the treehouse modules transform accordingly to accommodate various functions, analogous to our body cells- originated from a similar code yet adapting for specific functionality in a seamless manner.
Design For Assembly & Dis-Assembly
Anchored to the notion of low-impact construction, the treehouse modules are all designed in eco-friendly materials- lightweight, low-carbon, and component-based. Cross-laminated wood as the primary material, is designed in parts and components through the pre-fabrication method for the convenience of logistic and construction in a nature reserve area. Embracing the concept of reversible architecture, the joinery and fixing are designed to be non-destructive, hence enabling them to be assembled and disassembled easily. From an ecological perspective, this approach leaves a minimal impact on the forestry site, while complementing the character of a natural atmosphere.
A New & Old Ecosystem
Conclusively, the proposal traces a new lifeline across the existing landscape, offer an opportunity to bring urban life closer to the embrace of nature. The place has become a pause from the urban tempo, a relief from the city tension, and a discovery of one-self within nature. Integrating with the pre-existing ecosystem of wilderness, a new ecosystem with the coexistence of people, culture, artifices and nature is brought within gracefully- they come as a full circle of life.

BETHANY HIRD

BETHANY HIRD

M.Arch

STATEMENT OF INTENT
Tree House Park Design - GAD Foundation
BETHANY HIRD
I am very pleased to present to you my portfolio. I am currently working as a Part II Architectural Assistant in London and your competition has come to my attention as I have a keen interest in forest architecture, as my portfolio will illustrate.

The portfolio I have attached contains work from a project I conducted during my Architecture Masters studies titled ‘Project Treehab’. For this project I designed an off the grid, zero electricity rehabilitation centre for digital addicts in Epping Forest. The centre, which comprised of bedrooms, living quarters and therapy rooms was designed and detailed to be entirely supported by existing trees and constructed by hand. The project required I undertake extensive research into ecology, construction techniques and planning laws in relation to the forest environment. The first portion of the portfolio shows visuals of the project whilst the second half explains the process of procurement, construction and technical detailing.

I would like to now approach your competition brief with the same level of detail and understanding of the site, constraints and local vision as exhibited in my previous work. There is an opportunity to create outstanding architecture which embodies principles of having a low impact of the environment, energy efficiency, low emission values and unification with forest ecology, all whilst providing a sensitive extension to the already established neighbourhoods of Cekmekoy. I believe my previous work focused on forest - based architecture, alongside my professional experience gained in practice makes me an ideal candite to be considered for the shortlist of finalists. I would very much enjoy creating a proposal for the project.

Media Partners

CONSULTANT

GOKHAN AVCIOGLU

ARCHITECT & FOUNDER of GAD

INANC KABADAYI

CEO of EGE YAPI

NEJAT SARDANLI

BOARD MEMBER of CASPER