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This is one of those shelter design ideas that sounded good in theory and problematic in practice. Few such projects become a reality, making this timber-framed retreat a rare (but hopefully safe) exception … so far, so good, as it does not appear to have burned down (yet).

The concept itself is very cool – or rather, hot … then warm … then cold? A metal frame wraps all four sides of the structure, with slots to fit felled lumber to be used as fuel for a central fireplace. An open void in the top lets out excess smoke, as do the natural openings between pieces of wood tucked into the walls.

One would think that the whole place could catch fire, but apparently there is enough distance within the dwelling (and between it and other structures) to make it work. As the winter wanes, so does the supply of burnable logs – the walls slowly open up and let in more light, reducing the protection needed in otherwise cold Canadian climates.

By the time summer comes, this little architectural abode by Noa Biran & Roy Talman (images by Henk Von Pickartz, Brian Gould, Peter Hargraves, Dave Pancoe and Dan Harper) will be an open air, slightly-sheltered summer pavilion until the next fall rolls around and new log piles are made going into the winter. (via ArchDaily)