The growth of sustainable architecture takes people and their building projects to new heights — literally. Since the great recession, there has been a growing trend in people abandoning the traditional abode and looking for alternative forms of home living. While shipping container houses and tiny homes appear excellent ideas in terms of conserving and repurposing, nothing is more symbiotic between earth and sustainable architecture than a treehouse.
Tree House Living
Yes, tree houses. But not the ones your parent built for you when you were a child. Tree houses constructed with running water, air conditioning and plumbing. And while you can set your home surrounded by the most beautiful landscapes in the world, nothing will ever beat a bird’s eye view from living at the top.
Other benefits of treehouse living, which may appeal to some, include seclusion, security and boundless fresh air. You can virtually build a treehouse anywhere; that is, as long as the tree is strong enough and you contact the township first, buy the land and have the right permits. If you get the right permissions, then build away.
What type of tree house is best for you depends on what your needs are. Do you want to go big or small? Do you want to build high or low on the tree trunk? Do you mind walking upstairs? Do you want indoor plumbing or outdoor plumbing? A certified sustainable architecture or treehouse builder will consult these questions and more with you.
It is also vital to keep in mind the tree’s health and life. If you add the majority of the weight to one side of the tree, the tree will compensate this added stress. Protecting the tree from predators and harm to it bark will be a responsibility. Additionally, trees never stop growing. While the effects of tree growth may not affect you or the structure immediately, something such as an ill-maintained branch can cause structural damage.
Despite all these necessary factors, how sustainable you want your tree house is completely up to you. Utilizing repurposed materials, such as wood and metal as the exterior of you home, will not only be stylish but eco-friendly. The installation of solar panels, where applicable, will help you get off the township grid and reduce usage of natural gas or petroleum products to power your home. Installation of a geothermal heat pump will heat and cool your home more efficiently than a traditional heating and cooling system.
The possibilities of treehouse living are vast. You just have to find the right people to help you.
Whether you are a tree climber or land dweller, contact SH Architecture for your public works or sustainable architecture designs today. We have offices in Las Vegas and Salt Lake City and look forward to making the building of your dreams a reality.