PORTFOLIO:Resort & Tourism
FRENCH ALPINE CLUB
At 3,800 metres, France’s new Refuge du Goûter lodge is set to be a marvel of self-sustainability.
Our scope of work for the Refuge of the Plan de Neddle was to increase the capacity of the shelter with the creation of new facilities, complete change of the roof, upgrade to the facades and build the surrounds for the visitors.
The last stop before the final climb to the summit of Mont Blanc on the main route is a new hut awaiting mountaineers: a four-storey, egg-shaped structure, 16 metres high, on the Arête du Goûter. Part of it juts out from the cliff, over a 1,500-metre drop. This all-wooden structure, clad in stainless steel, was commissioned by the French Alpine Club and designed by the Swiss architect Hervé Dessimoz. It aims to be exemplary in environmental terms, self-sufficient for energy and water, and able to withstand winds of up to 300kph (186mph).
There are solar panels, generating heat and electricity on the front of the building and the cliff face.
The new hut boasts six environmentally friendly toilets. To reduce water consumption, the design team borrowed the vacuum-suction principle used in aircraft. A tiny sewage farm will process organic waste, outputting highly compacted sludge which can, if necessary, be heliported down to the valley for final disposal. Any water released into the mountain environment will be clean.
With triple glazing and dual-flow ventilation, insulated by wood-fibre panels, the temperature indoors ranges from 18C to 22C.