The Final Stretch and What’s Next

This last week was our final week working on the bee nursery. With the dry fit finally complete it was time to take the structure to the real site and it’s new home at UNCA. On Monday we disassembled the dry fit and transported it to the site. With UNCA’s help we were able to dig a level surface and start constructing the nursery. It was an exciting moment for everyone! Tuesday was spent wrapping up construction by attaching the roof and finally anchoring down the structure. Construction went smoothly and all that was left was to add the bee habitats and furniture pieces.

On Wednesday the structure was up and it was time to finish our furniture pieces and start working on bee habitats. Using the bamboo we cut down from last week we made habitats for the bees. By bundling up the bamboo it fit nicely inside cardboard tubes and coffee cans. At the end of the day we were treated to a visit at Biltmore Gardens. A beautiful, peaceful place to go after all the hard work everyone has put into the project.

Thursday was the big reveal and ribbon cutting ceremony. With everything finished it was time to relax and enjoy the final product. The turnout was terrific and we were excited to see everyone who helped with the project together in one place. We all had an amazing time with Asheville Design Build Studio and can only imagine what’s in store for next summer’s students. To everyone that helped us with this project we thank you and wish you all the best! – Sincerely Asheville Design Build Team




Updates, mock-ups, and lending a hand

In week 4, we started off by presenting the project’s updates to faculty and students from UNC Asheville at their campus. Many changes for the project occurred during the weekend such as updating the educational information that we discovered from last week’s “Bee Con” as well as design strategies that best respond to the needs of a proper bee nursery for the site. The feedback from UNC Asheville was great and we are all excited about the progress that has been made.

Back at the wood shop, we started to fabricate full scale mock ups to help us visualize the scale of the bee nursery. Everyone is assigned to fabricate specific parts of the main structure to help speed up the process. We are labeling members of the structure, drilling holes for the bolted connections, and assembling all of the pieces.

After evaluating the mock-up model, we adjust a few components to make the proportions of the project feel just right. Liz treats us with coffee and donuts to help us focus and stay awake! Boston creme donuts are the best!!!

We also took time this week to help out the ADC with the maintenance of a past project. This opportunity is a great way to establish a relationship with the community of Asheville and show our passion for not only designing awesome projects but to also show that we care about every project after their completion. The project we helped with is an outdoor learning garden located on Burton Street.

Bee Experts + Project Visualization

Tuesday’s Pollination Celebration (Bee Con) at the NC Arboretum has been our largest community engagement activity to date: After attending a highly educational lecture about pollinators and what to plant for them, Studio-B set up in the lobby and we presented our research, schematic design, and overall goals for this project.

Local bee-experts, landscape architects, and community members provided us with valuable feedback on material usage and form that we have now adapted into our design. Overall, the event was very informative for us and our project, and we got to enjoy some delicious and healthy snacks provided by local gardeners. 🙂

Throughout the week, we’ve been acquiring both found and store bought materials to begin creating some small mock-ups of our design. Below, you can view how we plan to frame certain areas on the site to highlight the beautiful gardens UNCA displays at the entrance to their campus. We’ve even begun marking the site where we plan to build the main structure. The paint might not be there now, but the exercise opened our eyes to the reality of the project and the importance of how an object this large sits on the site. IMG_3143

Week 3 came to a close with a  very productive weekend that began to iron out our construction drawings which put us back on track and in the clear for when we finally start construction after the Fourth of July. GO AMERICA! 🙂 🙂 🙂

Schematic Design Process Moves Along

To start of the week, we invited several local architects, board members from ADC, and bee specialists to review our initial design strategies for the bee nursery. Overall, we received great feedback which helped us to look at this project at a scale beyond the campus of UNC Asheville, to allow the design to influence visitors of the nursery but the community as well.



With feedback from Monday taken into consideration, we each improved our design strategies over the next few days into a single schematic designs we each presented to our clients at UNC Asheville.



After meeting at UNC Asheville on Thursday, we had a better idea of what their expectations are for the bee nursery: making sure there is an emphasis on the educational aspect of the program in order to inform the public about the importance of pollinators and a design that has a sense of belonging in the site. They were also excited about several ideas that were presented such as a green roof system, a “make your own bee nursery” station, and satellite pods dispersed throughout the site.

Friday we were back to the drawing board to refine the design. We combined our ideas and UNCA’s requests to develop an iconic bee nursery. It’s a rigorous design process but it will be worth it in the end!