Cabin Fever, a competition hosted by Barker O’Donoghue Master Builders, provides architects the freedom to design with minimal limitations. Dual classes of the competition challenged participating teams to tackle two types of structures: the off-the-grid cabin, called the “DNA Cabin,” and the emergency shelter, dubbed “The Transitional Housing Module.” Teams were encouraged to design with an eye toward novelty, audaciousness, frugality, madness, and genius.

We developed one conceptual strategy for both parts of the competition. Our “Filter Cabin” is a versatile companion to the existing cabin retreat. Sited among the trees, it echoes the DNA of main cabin next door. This new structure enhances the old one by offering occupants a filter space to shelter from a moment of intense distress, or simply the stress of the daily grind.

“Filter Cabin” uses a cost-effective prefabricated structure and modular components that are easy to construct and adaptable to both everyday use and crisis situations. Users can configure six carefully- designed programmable pod shelves to suit their needs. These shelves maximize flexibility within the 200 square foot air-conditioned space. If an emergency should strike, these pre-programmed pods can be stacked, shipped out and deployed for immediate response. On the lighter side, to encourage adventure and play, we designed the floor to expand into a floating net. This feature creates a unique vantage point for the stunning view: standing next to your home, suspended in mid-air between the sky above and the steep sloping earth below.

*Honorable Mention, Cabin Fever 2012


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