Architect: Rory Rankin

Tutors: Rory Rankin, Colin McClelland, Andri iIzbash

Location: VelikoTarnovo, Bulgaria

Year: 2014

Area: 43 m2

Photographs: EASA Boathouse Team/Alexandra Kononchenko


Participants: Glen Andrews, Peter Baldacchino, TadejBožak,MarkCauchi, Samuel Cremona, Iulia Cucu, Robert Fenech, Ciara Geary, Rachel Graham, KatjaHamler, AulonHarizaj, TerezaHaumerová, Katerina Karagiannak, Donal McMullan, Zak Pulis, Dorian Šipoš,Elena Sofia Congiu, Malcolm Tong, DanijelZorec


With a great pleasure, let me introduce you a workshop: Boathouse, which was realized during EASA 2014 in Veliko Tarnovo. It has impressed me from the very first look, but the point of view of author and his filling of architectural spirit made the interest to increase.

Here’s description of the concept from the Author below:

“…The Boathouse concept was inspired by the unique location of VelikoTarnovo. When I was researching the city, I discovered that the River Yantra was a vibrant social part of the city in times past, so the aim was to bring use back to the river. Many years ago it was mainly used for transportation, but as this is not needed any more (with cars, trains, etc. all easily available), our workshop aimed to bring a different use to the river – a leisurely use. Therefore, the Boathouse can be used as a storage for water sports equipment, such as kayaks, as well as a social space for those who wish to relax by the riverside. The form of Boathouse resulted partly from the weather of Bulgaria and partly from the concept mentioned above…”

The building includes three parts, which form the full architectural shape of the one. Solid part of the project created by wooden walls and roof with the help of “semi-shelter” softly transits into the open balcony. The covered area is oriented to the surrounding forest and the open balcony to the riverside. The semi-enclosed area is a continuation of the main structure. One can even say, the Boathouse leads the visitors from the small wooden ramp in the entrance of the building to the Yantra River. As it was mentioned by the author, the balcony had meant to be much longer and hanging over the river to give the visitors a filling of full unity with the surrounding nature. From my point of view the idea is good, but anyway even without realization of this part the spirit of building stays the same. The Boathouse stands on a sloped building lot, that’s why the base supports are longer on the river side below the floating balcony. The air goes through the void below the building.

I have asked the author, what did he have enjoyed most and what was his favourite part of the project. First sentence was about the wonderful team he had. The passion to the work could be felt in every word written.

“…So the part that I enjoyed most was the wall and roof structure go up before the cladding was attached. I love how they look and I think timber is a great material aesthetically. The next best part was seeing the covering boards finally fixed to the cladding – partly because that was the moment when the construction was finished, but also because I think it’s a very attractive detail and makes the Boathouse look complete.”

The Boathouse could fit many locations, but the author prefers not to make a serial prototype from this project. The building was inspired by the Yantra River and designer for VelikoTarnovo. Definitely, the Boathouse will become one of the most magnetic locations in the city and with the time ongoing it will gather more and more stories inside itself.


For the final presentation video go here:

Rory’s other works :



Author: Tata Alkhazashvili






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