Project : Architecture





Project: ARCHITECTURE is a new partnership between the Girl Scouts of Utah [GSU] and the School of Architecture at the University of Utah to raise awareness of careers in the built environment for women. The inaugural project for this partnership was the design and construction of three cabins for the Girl Scout’s Trefoil Ranch Camp near Provo, Utah. As part of the design project, the authors Erin Carraher and Jörg Rügemer have hosted a year-long series of outreach events to expose GS directly to women practitioners, to provide female student mentors in design-related programs, and to offer opportunities to visit architecture firms and construction sites.

The regionally rooted typology adopted for the cabins is simple, clearly defining the project as highly sustainable from a design as well as a material standpoint. It is constructed from Interlocking Cross Laminated Timber to incorporate locally sourced wood damaged by pine beetle infestation prevalent in the American West into the assembly of solid wood panels. Utilization of this new material puts the project at the forefront of sustainable construction with findings expected to influence the construction market along the Wasatch Front and beyond. Concrete piers minimize construction disturbances while simultaneously maximizing land use efficiency. The design maximizes site conditions (sun exposure, wind protection, orientation) and preserves environmental quality with the goal to support the local ecosystem through design with nature. The cabins will raise critical awareness of finite resources and management of natural resources for the client community. Within its larger context of the GSU, the project creates a space of communal significance and social value.

The collective, integrated design/research/construction process applied by the team consistently included all stakeholders - building authorities, students, scouts, contractors, and trades - to efficiently provide a long-term economic benefit for the users and non-profit GSU.


2014 Design Arts Utah Juror’s Award

2014 ACSA diversity Achievement Award

2014 Honorable Mention award - Public interest DESIGN Award

2014 ACSA Collaborative Practice Award


Project organization, cabin design: Erin Carraher, Jörg Rügemer

Client: Girl Scouts of Utah, Lisa Hardin

Contractor: Euclid Timber Frames, Heber City, Utah

Donors: Oldcastle USA; Wasatch Steel; Colton

Photographer: Nicholas Steffens