Eco-Tourism and Rangers Academy
2011 – 2013
The project, which will be the first of its kind in the region, is an international-standard academy for eco-tourism and environmental ranger services in Ajloun. It aims, on one level, to provide national and regional requirements of tourism industry and environmental agencies, and to create, on another level, significant career opportunities and socio-economic benefits for the people of Ajloun.
The project is constructed in an abandoned stone quarry and acts as a healing intervention that is dramatically coexisting with the wounded nature. The building simply sits on the quarrying site which is left as skinless bone presenting a section in the Ajloun Mountain geology. The architecture celebrates the bedrock while preserving the surrounding mature forest, manifesting that damage of previous quarrying activities should and can be healed.
This project, now under construction, is located in the northern highlands of Jordan. The site will function as an academy to train rangers of protected areas; it will also have a wide academic/training program related to landscape management in areas of natural or cultural heritage. To assist the academic component, one side of the building will function as a popular restaurant that will generate funds for the academic program and help in financing the management of the nearby protected area.
As mentioned earlier, the site is basically an abandoned stone quarry. The dramatic limestone cliff created by the quarrying activities, and left untouched after abandonment, became the profile of the front elevation which followed the random cliff line as accurately as possible.
The building will demonstrate green issues to users and visitors. It will have good insulation using straw filling within thick walls, it will use geothermal energy technology, and will benefit from good orientation and passive cooling provided by the shape and details of the structure itself.
Architect: Khammash Architects
Client: Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature (RSCN)
Location: Ajloun, Jordan
Project area: 3255 sqm.
Status: Under Construction
Program: Training Center, Forest Information Center, Nature Shops, Restaurant
Type: Educational – Academic Building
Location: Um Al Yanabbi’, Jabal Ajlun, Jordan
Building status: Ongoing building work
Number of stories: 2
Site area: 20000 m2
Site type: Rural
Budget total: 2,000,000 USD
Images and content courtesy of Khammash Architects