Parasol Treehouse at Festival des Cabanes in Rome, Italy

After its creation in 2022, the second edition of the Festival des Cabanes at the Villa Medici in Rome takes place from May 24 to October 1, 2023. Throughout the summer, it offers architects, artists, and people interested in art and culture the opportunity to visit the exhibition in the historic gardens of the Villa Medici. One of the seven cabin projects has benefited from the intervention of Atelier PoCo, a French customer of Dlubal Software, for its design and technical study.


In 2023, the festival is marked by the construction of the 13 m (about 42 ft) high timber tower with the aim of collecting rainwater to gradually redistribute it. The tower's shape looks like a funnel, with a widened lower part of more than 3.60 m (about 12 ft) and an upper part that is about 7 m (about 23 ft) high, including three cantilever wings.

The structure is entirely made of glued-laminated timber, offering both strength and flexibility. To ensure the equilibrium of the tower, several tons of travertine are carefully arranged at its base. Tension members have been placed to brace the entire structure and ensure its stability.

Being exposed to the wind, the tower is subjected to displacements at its head, which may reach several tens of centimeters. This requires an accurate design and special attention to the connections. In this project, all the connections are hinged, allowing the structure to adapt to the movements induced by the forces exerted on the construction and their proper transfer to the supports.

Modeling in RFEM 6

RFEM 6 was used for the cabin's modeling and load transfer. In addition, the program allowed the designers to analyze and simulate the behavior of the tower structure, taking into account the loads applied by the Structure Stability add-on.

Due to the specific "Steel Design" and "Timber Design" add-ons integrated in RFEM 6, the steel and timber elements could be designed according to Eurocode standards. The possibility of treating a multi-material structure in the program, using the option to choose the load combination standard "EN 1990 | Base + Timber", played a significant role in optimizing the working time for this project.

The treehouse cabin represents an inspiring example of the alliance between architectural creativity and environmental concerns in the context of the festival.

Location Villa Médicis, Viale della Trinità dei Monti
00187 Rome
Design Atelier CRAFT
Engineering Atelier CRAFT
Atelier Henri Terreaux
Atelier PoCo (Poésie Constructive)
Engineering Office for Structural Analysis Atelier PoCo (Poésie Constructive)
Assembly Atelier CRAFT
Manufacturing Agence togaether
Atelier CRAFT

Project Specifications

Model data

Number of Nodes 74
Number of Lines 299
Number of Members 284
Number of Surfaces 0
Number of Solids 0
Number of Load Cases 4
Number of Load Combinations 41
Number of Result Combinations 0
Total Weight 1.013 tons
Dimensions 206.22 x 34.91 x 155.27 feet

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