This project is a visitor’s center and site office for Better Place Forests, America’s first spreading forest. A spreading forest is a permanently protected forest where families can spread the ashes of their loved ones under private family trees. BPF’s first forest is opening in 2017 in a redwood forest overlooking the Pacific Ocean in Mendocino County, California. Designed for construction at the Mendocino location, the concept is also prototype for future spreading forests where the number and configuration of modules can be adjusted for programmatic or site constraints.
Jury Notes: The presentation of this project reveals a clarity of concept, tectonics and form that make it exciting to contemplate as a completed building. The spaces take shape around the views and result in a sculptural and intriguing forest refuge. Inspired by Origami, the folded wooden plates create a lyrical but rigorous succession of spaces highlighting various views—vertical and panoramic.