“The Tree House is ephemeral yet has such clear geometries. Architecture for play and exploration is an important and unexplored use of the pavilion type, and this project delivers. The sense of play this project provides, as well as the move away from the traditional playscape, is key.”
— Claire Weisz, FAIA

Location Austin
Client Pease Park Conservancy
Architect Mell Lawrence Architects
Design Team Mell Lawrence, FAIA, Clare van Montfrans
Contractor Harvey-Cleary
Landscape Architect Ten Eyck Landscape Architects
Structural Engineer Architectural Engineers Collaborative Lighting Design Studio Lumina
Accessibility Consultant Altura Solutions
Graphics & Wayfinding Page/Dyal Branding & Graphics
Civil Engineer GarzaEMC
Irrigation Designer Sweeney & Associates

Accessed by a pathway tucked into a hillside, the Tree House is a reed-like enclosure offering park visitors an immersive experience of the tree canopy. Ramps and a steel bridge provide a fully accessible path between two levels: a large net above that invites visitors to pause and take in the surrounding flora and fauna, and stone blocks and landscaping that loosely define a gathering space below. Constructed of rebar, the enclosure is open to the elements, carving out an occupiable void that will be defined more by the surrounding trees than by the structure itself as the canopy densifies over time.

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