A village of beautifully designed, sustainable modular treehouses lining the grounds outside of a 13th century French castle may sound like the stuff of dreams. But Mexico-based architectural firm Forma Atelier is determined to make it a reality. The company created the project as an entry for the Tree House Module competition organized by French company Dartagnans.

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Designs for the treehouses feature simple fabrications and the use of materials like steel, wood and glass, chosen not only for their sustainable elements but also for their simple, uncomplicated construction. The proposed location in the town of Les Trois-Moutiers, France surrounds Château de La Mothe Chandeniers, a historic castle.

Related: Cartoon-inspired prefab treehouse can grow taller and wider over time

rendering of tall, narrow wood treehouse

Built on raised wooden platforms with the potential to accumulate climbing vines and plants over time, the treehouses have a more contemporary design than one would expect in the area. They are characterized by sharp lines, large windows and geometric shapes.

rendering of a tall, narrow wood treehouse and an A-frame cabin

While the wood provides inhabitants with a cozy ambiance, the steel and glass give off modern elements and strengthen the structure. According to the architects, the prototypes have the versatility to adapt to multiple surfaces and climates because of their modular capabilities; thanks to the triangular shape of the treehouse, modules can attach to different walls depending on their orientation.

diagrams of modular treehouses

The designers were inspired by the link between humans and nature in creating a place of refuge for free thought and dreaming. “Imagine the tree house as the triangular stage of our lives where the main actors are past, present and future,” the architects said. “The scaffolding of emotions which we go up and down through stairs that stop time, lines in the structure that simulate our life paths, intersect, whisper to us where we came from and where we are going, they call us to stop the march.”

+ Forma Atelier

Images via Forma Atelier