The N.O.C.

The NOC Boathouse: Bryson City, NC.

University of Miami SOA, Spring 2013

Students were to focus on a master plan and an architectural design for the Nantahala Outdoor Center’s (NOC’s) Main Campus. The NOC is a paddling and outdoor adventure outfitter located on the banks of the Nantahala River in Western North Carolina, on the south side of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Surrounded by the Nantahala National Forest, the Appalachian Trail passes directly through the heart of the NOC, crossing the Nantahala River on a foot bridge next to the Outfitter’s retail store.  The Great Smoky Mountain Railway also traverses the property.

Concept:  The natural environment still manages to fill us with a sense of awe and amazement. Despite all the knowledge gathered by mankind, nature still holds true to its many mysteries that we may not ever be able to unravel. In response to this daunting complexity, we try to control nature by enforcing a sense of order. Although we are completely dependent on it, as a result of these responses we have begun to distance ourselves from the natural environment. The goal of this design is to regain the close connection of mankind and nature.

The new Nantahala Outdoors Center fuses architecture and landscape in order to create a memorable experience. The site unwinds for visitors as it is perceived through each individuals movements through space and time. The new master plan engages with the old master plan transforming each transition space into a more intimate and meaningful moment.   The alteration of the master plan provides raised intersecting pathways in order to respect the natural environment while connecting visitors with the surrounding structural elements. These paths strategically flow through the mountains and between buildings forming new gathering spaces and vantage points. Visitors begin to experience a unified environment that is created through a constant connection between the built environment and the natural terrain. The Nantahala Outdoors Center is meant to be experienced through this idea of threaded movement; each building naturally weaved together into the site through a progression of small intimate spaces.

Mediums: Maya 2013, Autocad 2012, Photoshop, Illustrator & Indesign.