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Tourists from around the world travel to Quilotoa, a 12,000-foot-high active volcano with a brilliant blue lake in its crater. Located about 100 miles away from Quito, a local indigenous community offers facilities to tourists who may want to hike or camp at the crater. To better serve these visitors the Ecuadorian Ministry of Tourism worked with a group of architects to improve the access and amenities at the viewpoint. The design and construction were managed by Javier Mera, Jorge Andrade and Daniel Moreno.

Related: Ecuador’s Mashpi Lodge Wins 2014 World Travel Award for Best Green Hotel

Using locally sourced teak wood and an interior frame of steel, the design team came up with plan for a viewing platform that was built onto the rim of the crater. Modular parts allowed the materials to be easily assembled once on site and mean the construction can be dismantled and removed. The platform offers visitors multiple ways to enjoy the sights — the upper level could induce vertigo, whereas the lower level is quiet and feels safe. High walls on the platforms sides also serve as a wind break and make for a more comfortable viewing experience.

+ Javier Mera

+ Jorge Andrade

+ Daniel Moreno

Via Gizmodo

Images ©Lorena Darquea, Javier Mere, Pablo Puente