Kite Surf School

Lençóis Maranhenses, Brazil

The National Park of Lençóis Maranhenses located on the North-east coast of Brazil was the location of our latest competion project. The vast 1.550 km2 area of sand dunes intercepted with fresh water lagoons makes the site incredibly unique and environmentally delicate. The wind constantly sculpts the dunes and lagoons into new forms. The exposed location also makes it a fantastic place for kite surfers.

The Kite Surf School is a ‘kite boat’. It is composed of many textile planes stretched over a lightweight steel frame that is fixed onto a floating pontoon. Our design creates a structure that is moveable, receptive and adaptive to the seasonal changes of the sand dunes and lagoons typical of this unique landscape. High-density polyethylene pontoon units provide a stable base to attach the steel structure and create a terrace from which to watch the kite surfers.

4 Main Objectives:

Indoor-Outdoor Experience – The design creates an indoor-outdoor experience that provides maximum shading from the sun and shelter from the wind. The textiles have varying visual permeability, depending on the function of the screen in the common and private areas. The main sun screen shades the common area and creates a window to the landscape.

Visual Landmark – From the surfer’s perspective, the kite boat serves as visual landmark. Its colour is complementary to the blue-green pools and white sand dunes. It acts as way finding beacon.

Ecological Construction– A steel structure was chosen for its long lifespan and its renewable properties. The structure can be easily disassembled, melted down and re-purposed into new steel components while retaining its original strength.

Functional Structure – Durable plastic pontoon units provide a stable base to attach the steel structure and create a terrace from which to watch the kite surfers. Textile tents for sleeping accommodation, kite storage units, kitchen and bathroom facilities occupy the structural spine. Tanks on the roof provide gravity fed water.

Architects: Jens Brinkmann
Collaborators: Jerome Schloh, Chiara Sanguin, Emily Pearce, Minh Le, Tuan Anh Nguyen

United Architektur BDA
Wichertstraße 2
10439 Berlin

T: +49 (0) 30 308 740 26


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