Polycarbonate Cabin by Alejandro Soffia, Guanaqueros architecture, Alejandro Soffia low cost architecture, tight budget good design, good architecture on a budget, polycarbonate architecture. Polycarbonate Cabin in Guanaqueros

Known for his specialization in low cost yet beautiful design, Soffia has experimented with various cost-saving building techniques, including prefabricated design as seen in his SIP Panel House in Santo Domingo, Chile. With the Polycarbonate Cabin, however, the architect stepped away from prefabricated design. “[P]refabrication techniques require some industrial processes, related to commercial markets, that have a limit if you want to go down on the building cost,” said Soffia. “So then I tried working on ‘low tech’ design. In a country like Chile, you usually find precarious contexts were buildings rise. So is easy then to get in touch with local precarious techniques and workforce.”

Polycarbonate Cabin by Alejandro Soffia, Guanaqueros architecture, Alejandro Soffia low cost architecture, tight budget good design, good architecture on a budget, polycarbonate architecture. Polycarbonate Cabin in Guanaqueros

Related: Modular Casa SIP is a Zero-Waste Home in Chile

He applied his “low-tech” approach to the Polycarbonate Cabin and, working with a local carpenter, used local building techniques and materials to minimize costs. Aside from a tight budget, Soffia also faced the challenge of a small and shaded site due to the placement of the built house and a pre-existing 9-square-meter room. To solve this challenge, he built the pre-existing room out into a sun-soaked patio and then added extensions on either side of the room with translucent polycarbonate panels that let in natural light. Light-colored wood surfaces within the home reflect light and add to a sense of spaciousness. The client rents out the cabin as a rental vacation home to visitors.

+ Alejandro Soffia

Images via Alejandro Soffia, by Juan Durán Sierralta