Design in Weird Places: Mountain Marvels - Design Bureau

The Huski Apartments, Australia

Church of St. John the Baptist, Switzerland

Galzigbahn, Austria

Design in Weird Places: Mountain Marvels

Wednesday, November 30th, 2011

by Justin Ray

The Huski Apartments
Location: Falls Creek, Victoria, Australia 
Architect: Elenberg Fraser Architecture 

Based on the unique radial symmetry of a snowflake, the Huski Apartments’ geometric arrangement make them capable of withstanding large amounts of snowfall by spreading it out amongst multiple eaves. Using the structure of snow to defeat snow itself? Genius. 

Church of St. John the Baptist
Location: Mogno, Maggia Valley, Switzerland
Architect: Mario Botta Architetto

In 1986, the people of Mogno, Switzerland, were devastated to find their 350-year-old church of St. John the Baptist (San Giovanni Battista) destroyed by an avalanche. Thankfully, legendary Swiss architect Mario Botta took it upon himself to rebuild it. The new structure is an exercise in defiance and duality, alternating layers of Riveo granite and white Peccia marble—both locally sourced—to form the cylindrical, fortress-like walls. Now, town residents can bask in divine light while thumbing their noses at Mother Nature.

Location: Arlberg, Austria
Architect: Dreindl Architects 

Rearing its elegant glass-and-steel head from the slopes of St. Anton am Arlberg is a ski lift called Galzigbahn. Its Ferris wheel design allows skiers to enter gondolas at ground level. Not only is it convenient and accessible, it’s efficient, too; it can carry 2,200 people every hour, meaning you’ll have more time to gaze at the man-made wonder from on high.

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