View Full Version : Architectural Thesis: Shelter Design

08-28-2013, 18:27
I am writing this thread to thank everyone who participated in my hiking shelter survey around a year ago. Your information was paramount in helping with the development of my thesis proposal.

Below is the abstract of my proposal as well as a link to the thesis book itself. It is a relatively large book and I invite you to look through all of it, but the following pages highlight the information I feel is the most important:

Chapter 3 - User Survey and Results - p 53
Chapter 7 - Developing the Matrix and Matrix Proposal - p126-139
Chapter 8 - Matrix Adaptation - 151-162
Chapter 9 - Final Defense - 165-254 (Mainly Images)

I want to stress before hand that the sites chosen were not because I felt it necessary for a shelter to be placed there, but instead were chosen to test the capabilities of the matrix system. McAfee Knob, for example, would be ruined if a shelter was placed in the location I suggested. However, this site offered a clear example of designing a shelter on an area with a rocky substrate, and it is for that reason I chose this particular site.

Thesis Book - http://issuu.com/zcallaway/docs/zach...zing_the_trail (http://issuu.com/zcallaway/docs/zachary_callaway_blazing_the_trail)

Thesis App - http://www.zcallaway.com/thesis


Throughout our National Parks, acres of untouched land are slowly deteriorating to an irreversible status. Unfortunately, the
people who help cause the destruction are also the ones who value the land the most. Research indicates that traditional
“tent” camping causes harmful erosion and vegetation impaction that, if not addressed, could eventually lead to the
destruction of many natural parks.

This poses the question: can architecture provide the solution? Shelters offer hikers a designated area to camp, thus
decreasing the potential for illegal campsites. However, with the increase in shelters throughout the Appalachian trail, a
new issue occurs. Structure creep is the terminology used to describe the movement of once primitive structures to more
advanced shelter designs, changing the identity of the Appalachian Trail.

The purpose of this proposal is to explore a solution to combat the effects of structure creep. The result is a matrix of different
configurations that produces optimum shelter designs based on select parameters. The projects within this thesis embody this
methodology through five unique topographic conditions. Through the use of the matrix, along with detailed site analysis
and user studies, a series of fully nature integrated structures are created.