Beautiful Treehouse Built Around Ancient Oak Without Harming a Major Branch

Fair Companies/Video screen capture

From an Ewok Village in Oregon to the world's largest treehouse, whenever Treehugger posts about treehouses we usually get some concerned commenters asking about the impact on the trees themselves.

This latest example from Fair Companies—the same guys who brought us the Ewok Village and this large, elevated roundhouse—shows how careful design and an appreciation for flexibility can mean treehouses and trees can exist in almost perfect harmony.

Fair Companies/Video screen capture

Built around a beloved holm oak in the Extremadura region of Spain, this structure was created as a family home. But rather than designing the home to fit the family, says the Fair Companies blurb, the family worked with design firm Urbanarbolismo to create a house that fits the tree:

It fits so well, in fact, that not a single branch of the centuries-old oak had to be removed, nor was a single nail or screw driven into one. Even the small home's materials are adapted to the environment and provide a perfect camouflage. The roof is made of local shrubs, or "brezo" (heath) and the exterior walls are clad in the bark of local cork oak trees (cork bark can be removed every 9 years and will regenerate).

Fair Companies/Video screen capture

Given the fact that the centuries-old oak is still growing, the architects also designed the house to rise as the tree grows. The family simply loosens a number of underground screws to allow the structure to lift as the growing tree excerpts more pressure.

It's all very cool stuff. Besides the obvious sustainability benefits of not harming an ancient oak, the simple discipline of working around what is already there creates a space like no other on earth. And that has got to be priceless.

Be sure to follow @kirstendirksen and @faircompanies on twitter for more of the same.

Tags: Architecture | Conservation | Green Building | Spain | video

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