wooden 'mirador aula' is suspended above protected forest in ecuador

wooden 'mirador aula' is suspended above protected forest in ecuador

a wooden lightweight observatory 


‘mirador aula’ takes shape as the first intervention of the master plan for the protected forest cerro blanco in ecuador. designed as an observatory, the wooden installation by al borde invites visitors to face the majesty of the forest letting landscape contemplation. aimed to appreciate its location, and context, the lightweight structure gives the feeling that it hovers over the slope. 


in an attempt to promote the collective experience of sitting in the front row, the structure acts as an open classroom for school groups that are the main visitors of this area. standing on the main axis, the guide or teacher can easily address the audience spread in the two lateral wings. wooden 'mirador aula' is suspended above protected forest in ecuadorall images courtesy of jag studio, maria veronica paszkiewicz and al borde



maintaining wood in its primitive state


in the design and construction of its mirador, the studio utilized pieces of wood in their primitive form. its dark hue comes from a vernacular japanese method of wood preserving where the surface layer is burned. this technique mineralizes and protects the surfaces from pests that could attack them.wooden 'mirador aula' is suspended above protected forest in ecuador



a giant timber spider covered by canvas


designed as a prototype after several tests, the ‘viewpoint’ allowed the architects to understand the whole scope of the technology on which the following interventions would be based. taking form as a giant timber spider, the main axis sits on tall slender stilts topped by a white canvas. this sheet —suspended in the tensioned structure— is impregnated with a cementitious mortar.


the mortar was technically designed to obtain high initial strengths and fluidity for the projection and the necessary consistency to adhere it and additionally provide low permeability in the hardened state protecting the textile from weathering and UV degradation. the roof not only protects the wooden skeleton but also reduces the carbon footprint by 68% compared to a concrete tile roof.

wooden 'mirador aula' is suspended above protected forest in ecuador


wooden 'mirador aula' is suspended above protected forest in ecuador
overlooking the surrounding scenery


wooden 'mirador aula' is suspended above protected forest in ecuador
triangle skeleton

wooden 'mirador aula' is suspended above protected forest in ecuador
hovering over the slope



construction process
construction process
3D model
3D model

project info:


name: mirador aula 

architects: al borde 
collaborators: maria veronica paszkiewicz
structural engineering: patricio cevallos
location: cerro blanco protected forest, guayaquil, ecuador
design: 2020
construction: 2021
construction: miguel ramos
shotcrete: odi – obras de ingeniería
commisioned by: fundación pro bosque
supported by: holcim ecuador
photography: jag studio, maria veronica paszkiewicz & al borde

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architecture in ecuador (105)

observatory architecture and design (142)

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wood and timber architecture and design (955)


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