Polestar Builds Sustainable KOJA Treehouse in Forested Finland
“Imagine driving through a Finnish Forest, taking the gravel road, going deeper and deeper into the forest. And as you approach your destination, you see this floating, flying structure, like a spaceship in the forest – and you enter the capsule, it’s more like a pod. You’re deep in a Finnish forest where you can enjoy a weekend away.” quotes Maximilian Missoni, Head of Design at Polestar.
The car company Polestar is expanding in the realm of sustainable design. While most carmakers prefer to stick to their brand identity, Polestar doesn’t feel the need to be bound by a single identity. First, it revolutionalized the electric vehicles industry and is also making its way into the world of architectural design. The KOJA Treehouse is their first design. Polestar has always had an upper hand in the EV industry, because of its sustainable and futuristic approach. The design of the KOJA Treehouse too takes the same road.
The KOJA Treehouse is a luxurious modern treehouse that aims to provide a sustainable travel experience in the lap of Mother Nature. It was conceptualized for the Polestar Design Context 2021, whose theme was ‘progress’. Designed by Finnish designer Kristian Talvitie, the design received an honorable mention at the competition.
Impressed by the design, Polestar decided to convert the design into a reality. KOJA now exists as a full-blown micro-dwelling on a tree truck in the lush forests outside the Fiskars village in Finland.
The Philosophy of KOJA Treehouse:
The designer Kristian Talvitie and the Head of Design at Polestar, Maximilian Missoni through the design of KOJA Treehouse aspire to “redefine sustainable travel by reducing the need for travel in the first place”
The designer further explains how her design combines user needs with the environment. She says, “Most designers look at the design from a user perspective. I also look at things from the environment’s perspective. There should be a symbiosis between the design and where it’s encountered.”
The primary reason for the actualization of the KOJA Treehouse into reality was that it resonated with the principle values of Polestar which is a sustainable practice. This design presented them with the perfect opportunity to step into a different realm.
KOJA by polestar firmly believes in living in harmony with the environment and innovating to create a better future. This minimal sustainable home in the woods gives people the pleasure of being close to nature without causing harm or over-consuming natural resources.
The Design of KOJA Treehouse:
Designer Kristian Talvitie envisioned the treehouse as a space where users can connect with the picturesque surrounding landscape. It brings them closer to nature and encourages them to appreciate the beauty of the wild.
The word KOJA takes its name from the Swedish word koja, meaning ‘hut’ or ‘den’. The design of the house truly stands for its name. Imagined as a modern minimalist treehouse, it respects the surrounding landscape and also stands as a strong complimenting statement.
The KOJA Treehouse is anchored to a tree trunk, just below the canopy, in a way that the tree remains unharmed. It is accessed through the staircase on the hindsight. The adjustable rubber fins create friction that helps in holding the structure in place along with additional cable wiring as support. The form is round with panoramic glazed windows to maximize views and natural light within the space. The glass sloping roof further brightens the interiors. The soft rounded edges and dark colors of the exterior help blend the structure with the surrounding woodlands.
The interiors of this minimalistic treehouse have a subtle charm, with curving walls and soft light-colored furnishings. The comforting luxe interiors of the space, feature a curved table that doubles as seating space. There is also an option to open a curved panel to make a daybed.
The Sustainable Features of KOJA Treehouse:
The KOJA Treehouse has minimal impact on the environment. It is built with sustainable locally sourced spruce wood and wool. The luminous house has little energy requirement and is 100% self-sufficient. It uses the energy of the sun, wind, and rain to sustain its energy requirements.
Brought to Life in Fiskars, Finland:
Kristian Talvitie worked with the design team of Polestar and the Finnish firm Ultra to construct the KAJO Treehouse just outside the Fiskars village in Finland. The elevated oasis is now situated on a tree in a Finnish woodland. It is a part of the ‘ House by an Architect’ exhibition of Fiskar village’s Art and Design Biennale. The house is open for people to view during the day from September 2022. Along with this, six other mini-houses are a part of the exhibition, these can be rented via Airbnb.
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