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Winnipeg Skating Shelters: Celebrating Winter

Are some of you already tired of the summer heat and dreaming of the snowy winter time? Check out these cute wooden bodies in the center of Winnipeg, where two rivers (the Red and the Assiniboine) meet.

The rivers create long skating trails in winter (which may last here up to 6 months), so, as the authors of this project say, “learning to celebrate winter makes sense”. And that is, undoubtedly, the main purpose of this project – celebrating winter!

The structures serve as temporary shelter from wind along the skating trail. Thus, the skating trail itself becomes more attractive to its visitors. Beside the practical usage of these playfully designed shelters, they also serve as an interesting and inviting architectural landmark, which could be successfully used in the summer time as well.

Imagine them in the green surrounding of trees-and-grass scenery at the riverside – they would look like huge flower buds! Attracting people with their abstract, beautiful and extremely sculptural form.

Actually, they are quite small and portable and could be placed anywhere. The twisted envelope of each hut is constructed of plywood, installed onto the timber armature. The idea of positioning the shacks close to each other provides the strengthened feeling of harbor: it seems that they try to protect each other from the frosty winter wind. At the same time, the intimate and closed space is provided within each hut.

“These are delicate and ‘alive’ structures”, as the architects put it. They are aimed to make one interact with nature and not to isolate one from the surrounding.

* More info at Patkau Architects

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