Great Northern Lodge Site Visit – Architect Whitefish Montana – Centre Sky Architecture

We returned early August from our site visit for the Great Northern Lodge project.

The project is starting to take form and also certain materials are beginning to be applied.

Great Northern Lodge is a project that has a complex structure based on concrete, steel, autoclaved aerated concrete, and oak hewn timbers.  Before we developed the design we had a strong sense to incorporate the existing cliffs, rock outcrops and certain landscape into the future architecture.  We will start to show you some of these applications through this post and future posts.

The vantage point from the first posted picture shown above we are looking at the study to our left and the foundation is in place, the next construction application will be the framed floor that will set directly on top of the concrete stem walls currently in place.  The Study will have great views to Beaver Lake and have a small tucked in patio with the existing boulder and cliff outcrops tucking it in.

The 4 bay garage roof is directly in front of us and has a good amount of staged lumber laid upon the concrete roof deck.  The garage roof is sloped concrete and will be waterproofed and will receive 4 to 6 feet of soil and boulders, shrubbery and small trees.  This intensive vegetated roof was designed to minimize the effect of the amount of built structures surrounding you when you were in the auto courtyard.  The built structure when looking in plan is somewhat of a donut and encloses the entire auto courtyard.  The Intensive vegetated roof will soften the experience when the Owner or guests are within this courtyard or looking out from the Formal Entry.  The blue board insulation is the back of the garage and will eventually be buried and the existing hillside that is in the foreground will ties back into the sloping vegetated roof on the garage.  This will give the impression of the garage being burrowed into the hillside.

In the center of the picture we are looking towards the stair rotunda (cylinder) and some of the guest bedroom wing (to the right of the crane)

The second picture shown above is a view from the guest wing looking down one of the halls that terminates at an inglenook fireplace.  Ben is standing where we will have one of our knuckles that will allow in plan the guest wing to have a different angle than the main residence that we are looking at currently.  Also there will be artistic glass within the windows at the cylinder.  To the left will be a glass and bronze bridge that will span to the Guest Master wing.  The white blocks are autoclaved aerated concrete (AAC)-we researched this material for several months and felt this was the material to use since it will not burn, has an r value unlike concrete, acoustic dampening, will not be a host for mold and has better str qualities than a typical wood stud wall.  Once we started to get the hang of it in design it became easier to detail and the same followed through out in the field in training the carpenters on the proper way to place the blocks and floor panels.

 The third picture shown above is showing the start of our stone placing and cladding.  These stones are at time 3 to 4 tons each at the base and will start to get smaller as they work up the wall.  The stone layup was directly influenced by the Sperry Chalet in the Glacier National Park known as Parkitecture as shown in our last picture.  Parkitecture is usually related to oversizing the materials used for that structure and can be stone, timber or logs and usually flares at the base to create a strong structural sense of order and allows the structure to create the connection back to the natural topography.  The stone is also very unique to the area where we have greens, green/brown, reds and purple stone colors that are indigenous to the area and the quarry was 30 miles from the site.

 The fourth picture above is showing most of the structural forms of walls and roofs and will be covered in the next several months with our insulation, drainage planes and weather barriers.  The Parkitecture style stone is also being placed on this side of the project as well.  We started with the overall wall being in theme with our Parkitecture principals and we expanded upon this to include the look of a talus pile.  A talus pile is generally referred to as a pile of rocks that accumulate at the base of a cliff or mountain side.  This may be the first talus pile wall tied into an integrated stone slab stair.  This pile extends 10 to 12 feet past the face of the wall and continues to give the integration effect of the 1 ½ to 2 story structure back into the topography.


Centre Sky Architecture _ Architect Whitefish Montana _ Jamie Daugaard

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