Architect: Fuse Architects Inc.
Builder: Fuse Construction Inc.
Owner: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints
Awards: Bronze medal IDA International Design Awards
Publications: Architectural Record Magazine
Santa Cruz Mountains / 2010 / 1000 acres
At a summer camp high in the Santa Cruz Mountains, this pair of bathrooms were required to be no maintenance and no more expensive than a typical public restroom building. The mechanical and plumbing equipment were placed in a central core of ground-faced exposed CMU block, with water jet cut Corten panels above to provide signage and as a nod to the wooded surroundings. Stalls and sinks of corrugated corten were arranged around the core. A large corten roof, angled to maximize the efficacy of a rooftop photovoltaic array, cantilevers out from the core to cover the stalls and sinks. Completed under budget and far superior to standard outdoor restroom buildings, this project illustrates that good design is about good ideas, not extravagant budgets. The 2020 CZU lightning fire swept through the park, burning every structure over thousands of acres. These two bathroom/shower buildings were the only building left standing for miles, and they were still working, with fresh toilet paper on the rolls.