On Norway’s “Riviera,” A Green Cabin For The Generations

If you happen to be sailing around the coast of Norway around the  Kragerø region, you might not notice the Buholmen cabin nestled in amongst the rocks. This fan-shaped coastal retreat, designed by Skaara Arkitekter, uses its sedum- and moss-covered roof and treated wood facade to blend inconspicuously into the surrounding rocks and greenery. This renovation project replaced an old cabin back in 2008, adding a new outhouse and jetty to the mix, and has been attracting the attention of green building aficionados ever since.

The cabin, which comes to us via Inhabitat, is split into two main structures — the southernmost wing a dedicated private zone consisting of “modest sleeping cabins,” and the east wing consisting of a split-level open living/kitchen area with views across the inlet towards Jomfruland. The structure makes the most of the north country’s abundant sun in the summer months with natural daylighting throughout. The building’s (sustainably sourced) pine facade is treated with iron-sulphate, creating a hue that — in combination with the home’s green roof — fits right into the surrounding environment.

Buholmen Cabin

image via Skaara Arkitekter

That attractive sedum-moss roof does more than help the cabin blend in, though. When winter rolls around, it helps to keep heat in the building that might otherwise be lost, and in the summer, it helps to keep the cabin cool. Not to mention the fact that it helps to capture and filter storm water before it rolls off into the surrounding watershed. (A thoughtful touch in an area home to 190 lakes.)

Buholmen Cabin

image via Skaara Arkitekter

Kragerø, located on the southern coast of Norway, has been called the “Skagerak Riviera” in recognition of its popularity with vacationing Norwegians. During the summer months, this seaside town’s population often more than doubles, thanks to its abundant sunshine and access to water.  Norwegian families often share a summer cottage or cabin in this region that stays in the family for generations; we imagine this one will be treasured for generations to come.

Susan DeFreitas has covered all manner of green technology for EarthTechling since 2009. She is a graduate of Prescott College for the Liberal Arts and the Environment, and has a background in marketing green businesses. Her work on green living has been featured in Yes! Magazine, the Utne Reader and Natural Home.