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Basecamp Isfjorden

Theodor Anglen Melder


Høst 2023
Institutt for arkitektur

Lisbeth Funck
Matthew Dylan Anderson
Cabins play a big part in the Norwegian culture, contributing to our country’s close relationship with nature and overall sense of well-being. However, this has two sides. While utilizing nature for activities is beneficial, it leads to constructing accommodations in valuable natural landscapes, destroying and flattening large squares of land. Simultaneously, the ascent of Randone introduces a new opportunity, enabling access to previously unexplored and magnificent natural environments while being gentle to nature. My task is therefore to create a structure that can accommodate people interested in randonee skiing.

Bringing more people into an avalanche exposed area could not be the best idea, but my project seeks to better people’s understanding and knowledge by bringing people with different levels of knowledge on the topic together, to make the mountain a safer place. As we have seen with the avalanches in Norway where half the people dying are foreigners, the safety of the skier has allot to do with the knowledge it possesses. So hopefully by bringing more people into the mountains surrounding Isfjorden, the project could make the vestlands alps a safer place to conquer.

The cabin is placed down in the town and not up in the mountains. One of the reasons I placed it here was because I wanted the building to be a basecamp where you can travel all around the surrounding mountain landscape, not a cabin where the cabin is the goal for the trip. This meant the focus for the task was to create great spaces that focus on the period before and after the ski trip. Another reason is to connect the project to the town of Isfjorden so that the structure can both bring people into the town, as well as giving a building that can be used by the people living in Isfjorden. 

The building starts with a long, stacked stone wall that reaches from the car park to the Basecamp. The car park has space for people to come with cars as well as vans if you travel around with that. The wall acts like a guiding tool for people and animals at the same time as it works like a shelter, sheltering from wind and sun as well as magazinating and radiating heat. 

The structure itself is inspired by the Norwegian storehouse where the structure meets the ground in a gentle way where the columns lift the building up from the ground so that the only points meeting the ground is where the columns meet the ground. The structure is 32m long and can house 32 people for accommodation. Although the building has a capacity of 32 people, the structure also facilitates for the people staying in a caravan or a van. 

To sum up, the building addresses the intricate balance between promoting exploration to a dangerous area and making randonee a safer activity in the majestic vestlands alps. While acknowledging the risks with more activity in the avalanche-prone areas, the project seeks to create a collaborative environment to enhance skiers knowledge/risk awareness. The building serves as a gateway to the surrounding mountain terrain and tries to create the best possible





Theodor A. Melder / Melder.theodor@gmail.com