National Park Restrooms Win Architecture Award

August 6, 2019

Hikers climbing Longs Peak at Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado don’t have to sacrifice their view when they’re taking care of business. The three restrooms on the trail to the 14,300-foot mountain feature open-air roofs and windows that take in the breathtaking panorama. The restrooms themselves are so scenic they received the American Institute of Architects’ Small Project Award for buildings under 5,000 square feet.

The structures are composed of metal cages filled with rocks from the surrounding areas. These sturdy walls fortify a thin steel box that makes up the outhouses’ interiors and enables the restrooms to withstand winds of up to 225 miles per hour.

Architecture students at the University of Colorado built the restrooms, which only require eight days to assemble. All the building materials were helicoptered in, and mules and llamas brought supplies and construction materials up the mountain.

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