A Series of Rustic Cabins by Colorado Building Workshop

These rustic cabins are have created by students of Colorado Building Workshop, a design/build program that’s run by the University of Colorado Denver. The program partners with non-profit organizations on various projects. In this case the aim was to develop a series of micro-dormitories for Colorado Outward Bound School (COBS).


Micro Cabins - Colorado Building Workshop - Colorado - Exterior - Humble Homes

COBS is an institution that provides a variety of outdoor character-building activities. A total of 14 micro-dormitories were installed among the pine trees of the forest. Each unit is positioned so as to create views of the surrounding woodland, rocky outcrops and mountains in the distance.


Micro Cabins - Colorado Building Workshop - Colorado - Deck - Humble Homes

Communal areas have been included, and it’s hoped that each cabin’s front porch will promote interaction between visitors. According to the designers, a single unit is produced from two separate elements – a box and a frame. The frame is standalone and provides a sheltered space for the storage of equipment and houses the box.


Micro Cabins - Colorado Building Workshop - Colorado - Interior - Humble Homes

The “boxes” were prefabricated in order to reduce the project’s time scale. It rests under the roof of the frame, which helps protect it from the heavy winter snow. The materials used reflect the aim to produce a low maintenance building – namely hot rolled steel and timber.

Micro Cabins - Colorado Building Workshop - Colorado - Interior Storage - Humble Homes

The steel roof provides a durable rain screen. The steel columns have wood set into their recesses largely for aesthetic reasons; they help the cabins blend in with the forest. The interior is finished almost entirely in wood. During prefabrication process, they were kitted out with birch plywood floors, walls and ceilings.

Micro Cabins - Colorado Building Workshop - Colorado - Storage - Humble Homes

All that wood creates quite a dark, but warm interior and it certainly helps to establish a connection with the exterior surroundings. Furnishings and storage have been built with CNC’d plywood that allowed them to create very precise cabinetry, very quickly.

For more cabins check out Starlight Room, a unique, not quite all-glass, remote getaway from Italy. Or, this 200-year-old barn that gets dismantled and rebuilt as a small home. See all cabins.

Via DesignBoom
Photos: Colorado Building Workshop

Niall Burke

Structural engineer by day, tiny house designer by night. Niall has a keen interest in small spaces, green design, and sustainability. He started developing Humble Homes while studying for his masters degree in engineering. He is the founder and managing editor of Humble Homes.

1 Comment
  1. I love the effect of the birch ply. Structures that use unfinished spruce, with the attendant knots, may be functional but have the look of molding forms for concrete.