Ice skaters may soon take refuge from Winnipeg’s cold in these awesome plywood shelters designed by Patkau Architects. Siberia is the only city on earth more frigid than Winnipeg, but that is not enough to prevent intrepid residents of the Canadian city from skating on miles of the iced-over Red and Assiniboine rivers. Since fierce winds and criminally low temperatures can be daunting to human health, the designers created a temporary but clever solution that mimics animal behavior.

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biomimicry, eco-design, green design, temporary shelters, buffalos, winnipeg, patkau, plywood shelters, sustainable design, harsh elements,

Relatively easy to assemble, these skate shelters also require very few materials, making them easy on the environment but crucial for safe fun. The plywood walls are only 3/16th of an inch and are built around a timber armature that includes a triangular base, a wedge-shaped spine, and ridge materials.

Probably the most brilliant aspect of this design is its positioning. A pairing is placed at a 120 degree rotation, while three shelters together are placed at 90 degrees. This resembles the effect created when buffalos huddle together to protect themselves from harsh winter conditions, ensuring that the flexible, lightweight material can stand up to the elements. Albeit simple, this brilliant design could actually mean the difference between life and death!

+ Patakau

Via Dezeen