Our first month of construction

New building of the Czech Technical University, unloadig of wooden elements of the AIR House canopy

Aerial view of the building site in front of the Faculty of Architecture in Prague

Unloadig of wooden elements of the AIR House canopy

Wooden elements of the AIR House canopy on the truck

20/06/2013 - For almost two years we have been designing, now, the project is entering its final phase and we began to build the house. It has been a month since we first came to the romantic abandoned factory in Mníšek pod Brdy and started to assemble first pieces of the AIR House. Thanks people from Dřevostavby Biskup for the space and the advice that they offer to us!

As the construction began, the team is excited, has new energy. We are building in three places. The main part is happening in Mníšek pod Brdy, at Dřevostavby Biskup (Timber-constructions Biskup), who greatly support us. The students have an expert carpenter at hand, who gives them professional support. Another part of the house is being assembled in Rýmařov by Vesper Frames, a company making the ceiling, floor and wall sandwiches for the AIR House. In the course of their practical training experience, the students of The Higher Professional School and the Secondary Technical School Volyně helped with the complicated construction of the wooden shading.

We work in teams of 3 to 4 people, the crews are planned a week in advance in order for us to be able to fulfill all our other study duties. In the first assembly week the horizontal sewerage system was laid, the weight bearing gird was thermally insulated and covered with OSB panels. During the second assembly week in three days we managed to fit the wall panels and inside partitions, and to cover the box with a CLT ceiling panel. Even though we have a flat roof, we decorated it with a traditional May pole. Prof. Zdeněk Zavřel, the dean of the Faculty of Architecture of the CTU, came to see the assembly progress and managed a lunch in the great local canteen.

In the third assembly week we started to assemble the wall boxes and at the same time we began to prepare the building site in front of the Faculty. Thursday June 6th, a fence grew in the open space in front of the new building of the CTU, and the next day a Dřevostavby Biskup truck brought wooden components of the pergola from Volyně. As a “second skin”, the wooden pergola is part of the “house in a house concept”. Its roof and a part of the side shading, made of spruce massive, had been assembled for the AIR House by students of the Higher Professional School and The Secondary Technical School in Volyně.

The fourth assembly week was challenging. It was necessary to finish the roof of the box in Mníšek pod Brdy, and to prepare the transport of the box and building material to Dejvice. Everyone took part, even our parents. We managed everything and June 17th we anxiously watched a crane settle the wooden box onto the space in front of the Faculty. The building site nicely filled up with the delivery of insulation panels from Vesper Frames from Rýmařov. After a period of heavy rains came a period of very hot weather and we had a chance to try out what awaits us in September in California. Settling of concrete panels, in which the building will be temporarily imbedded into, took place via a crane in 40°C. When possible, all work began to take place in early morning and afternoon hours, when shade returns to the area in front of the Faculty. Finishing of the water distribution system was therefore romantic, in time of sunset.