Three Capes Track Cabins
Three Capes Track Cabins, a series of simple and elegant accommodation facilities along the Three Capes track – a four day walk – that takes in the magnificent scenery of the Tasman Peninsula on Tasmania’s south-east coast. The Lonely Planet named the Three Capes Track “one of the world’s hottest new experiences”. Conceived by JAWSArchitects, the cabins at the three overnight sites provide welcome shelter for walkers tackling the Three Capes Track within the majestic Tasman Peninsula.
“Tasmania’s extraordinary Three Capes Track as one of the world’s hottest new experiences. For visitors, one of the most memorable parts of this compelling walking experience is staying overnight in the three huts located along the track” – Lonely Planet describes
The cabins’ location on the Tasmanian Peninsula made a prefabricated solution appropriate. The timber elements were pre-assembled and transported to site in 800 kilogram loads by helicopter, then assembled by a small team of craftsmen. Timber was chosen due to its lightness and durability, and for the ability to standardise building elements. It also suits the bushland setting. Bushfire-resistant species were used for the main structural elements.
JAWS worked closely with the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service to develop simple yet elegant fly-in shelters that sit lightly and effortlessly in this dramatic landscape. Adapting JAWS’ previous experience with prefabrication and transportable structures, the huts employ repeated and preassembled components. These components needed to be transported by helicopter in 800 kilogram loads, and then assembled ‘flat-pack style’ on-site by a small team of craftsmen.
Bushfire considerations, off-grid power, water collection, bird strike, salt spray and physical protection of flora and fauna all needed to be considered and skilfully integrated into the design. Window seats with tilted glazing to reflect the ground (so birds won’t fly into windows), along with extensive use of bushfire resistant timbers, are just some of the design solutions employed. The result is a refined and unassuming insertion that nestles lightly in this raw and precious environment.
Your accommodation during the three nights of your walk has been designed and built for comfort and minimal environmental impact. These cabins have been designed to make maximum use of the sun, maintaining warmth year-round through passive solar design alongside carefully integrated pellet heaters. The cabins provide you with a choice of comfortable indoor and outdoor spaces. Elevated walkways and verandahs allow visitors to easily move between buildings while protecting the vegetation and reducing the impact on the environment.
- Building materials were selected to provide maximum fire protection, minimise environmental impact and maintenance needs.
- Pure fresh rain water is collected for drinking, cooking and hand washing.
- Toilet waste is collected for offsite disposal and treatment.
- Pellet heaters using waste timber are provided in the communal areas.
- Windows slope downwards to minimise the risk of bird strike.
“We worked closely with the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service to develop these simple, elegant shelters that sit effortlessly in the dramatic landscape of the Tasman Peninsula. Drawing on our experience with prefabrication and transportable structures, we created the huts using repeated and preassembled components that were flown in by helicopter and assembled, flat-pack style, on site by a small team of craftsmen.”
This complex project also required us to consider bushfire, bird strike and salt spray and skillfully integrate measures to address these risks into the design. Our innovative solutions included tilting window seats down 20 degrees to reflect the ground (to deter birds) and the extensive use of bushfire resistant timbers. Our sensitive, sustainable design has produced refined, unassuming structures that sit lightly within the landscape and provide an opportunity for people to experience this precious and raw environment in safety and comfort.
Project name: Three Capes Track Cabins
Location: Tasman National Park, Cape Pillar, Tasmania 7182, Australia
Coordinates: -43.168266, 147.899666
Type: Shelter / Cabin / Lodge
Site area: n/a
Project area: n/a
Client / Owner / Developer: n/a
- JAWSArchitects – 21 Castray Esplanade Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
Contractor : Vos Construction and Joinery and AJR Construct
- Structural Engineer: Aldanmark Consulting Engineers
- Hydraulic engineer: Aldanmark Consulting Engineers
- Building surveyor: Pitt & Sherry
- Fire management strategy and emergency response plan: Eco Logical
- Aboriginal and historic heritage assessments: Entura
- Gas consultant: Engineering Solutions Tasmania
- Quantity surveyor: WT Partnership
- Prototype contractor: Island Workshop
Text Description: © Courtesy of JAWSArchitects, Australian Timber design Awards
Images: © Brett Boardman