Translucent 'Chicken Chapel' Puts Another Spin on the Coop

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From afar, it looks like a mini-sized yoga studio or sauna, but this translucent gem created by Boston-based Moskow Linn Architects and a group of five students is actually a chicken coop. Er, make that a "chicken chapel."

Made out of fiberglass panels and locally-harvested wood, this freestanding hen sanctuary was built as part of a hands-on workshop given on a 117-acre property in Norwich, VT, demonstrating that utilitarian design can be quick, low-budget and beautiful too.This June was the inaugural session of Studio North, a week-long building intensive that gets participants to "engage with the rural landscape and to imagine, develop and construct an inventive design" through small-scale rural interventions. This year's "Chicken Chapel" was the collaboration between five students and architects Keith Moskow and Robert Linn.


A rustic touch is added by the horizontally-laid maple sticks which were gathered on-site, forming a wattle that both filters light and protects the chickens from the elements.

The henhouse is raised off the ground to allow better air circulation on hot days and to prevent predators from climbing in. There's a human-sized door on one end of the structure, and an opening for chickens on the other.


Inside, there's an egg-shaped nesting box that offers a chuckle -- though one wonders about what to do with the oddly-shaped leftover spaces on the box's perimeter.


As dusk falls, the translucent chicken coop becomes a lantern box that lights up the landscape -- a cheerfully-lit refuge for its feathered residents.


Whether it's a more traditional coop or a uber-useful and mobile chicken tractor, coops come in all shapes and sizes, as seen in our links below. For more Chicken Chapel photos, or to apply for next year's session, check out the website.

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