At the end of May, we were asked to design a treehouse for the Wildlife Park Buchenberg, and at the beginning of July this should have already been completed in order to enable, in time before the start of the season, the numerous wild life park visitors to make use thereof. For this reason, there was no time to lose. Rather fortunately, I was able to come to an agreement with the resolved management within only one week. And this was the reason why, in spite of the extremely tight building schedule, there were not given any doubts regarding the completion in line with the time schedule, as also two motivated colleagues, Christian from Carinthia and Tobias from Salzburg, were ready to support us, thus essentially contributing to our success.
An extraordinarily vital beech tree having a thickness of one metre and far-projecting branches presented the ideal spot for this project. It is rooted in a hollow underneath the foot path. At a height of about four metres, we found the most suitable position for the platform, which we constructed from larch round rods around the trunk and strutted inclined towards the trunk downwards. On top thereof, we placed a layer made from larch tree floorboards. At another beech tree, located alongside the path, we spanned the suspension bridge from an elevated pedestal. The suspension bridge offers access to the treehouse platform situated at the same height, from where there is presented a wonderful view onto the wildlife enclosure, contrasted by the city centre of Waidhofen in the background.
Internally, the hut is composed of three-layered spruce slabs, which have been lined with scented hemp plates and raw spruce wood boards for further insulation. A double-bed made from Swiss stone pine and decorated by finger joints distributes a pleasant aroma of essential oils. The gable offers space for at least two additional persons; this area, however, will most likely be conquered and occupied by children.
The double-sashed steel frame window and the two wooden windows, which are all finds that have been restored and refurbished with love and care, have been given insulation glazing. Balustrade shafts made from weathered wine yard sticks as well as hemp nets at the sides of the suspension bridge will prevent a person from falling down.
We would like to thank the general manager Andreas for his down-to-earth character, for the problem-free realization and his hospitality. The enjoyable atmosphere was greatly influenced by the animal keepers Saskia, Alexandra, Daniel, Gottfried and Reinhard, whose visits definitely enlivened our workdays. Dominik and Susi of the restaurant ensured our well-being by means of their catering service. We usually camped outdoor having a view onto the grazing sheep and fallow deer; this was accompanied by an acoustic background composed of the sounds of the forest and the calls of the beautiful peacocks.