Pyramids in Kentucky

Rising from the landscape of Kentucky, is the dissonant images of three wooden pyramids. Their shapes are reflected in the water below, glowing with light that peeks through the delicate patterns in their facades. These are the concepts of legendary, Pritzker Prize-winner Shigeru Ban, in his vision for a local whiskey distillery. Ban, with his innovative usage of wood and cardboard in the past, is a prime fit for the project.

[Image: Virginlemon]
The site, formerly a quarry, will be transformed into a campus built out of mass timber. The 170-hectare Cedar Creek Quarry in Kentucky’s Bardstown will now be pumping out bourbon. Ban has proposed designs for the rickhouses and a bottling centre, along with the boldly-shaped distillery.
The landscaped campus, dubbed Kentucky Owl Park, swaps out traditional industrial steel for mass timber, merging sustainable design with the natural surroundings. Builders will expand existing quarry pits into enormous lake. Filled with limestone-filtered water, they will be of use in whiskey production.
[Image: Virginlemon]
“This is an opportunity for us to challenge ourselves like never before,” stated managing partner Dean Maltz. “These plans serve as our first Kentucky distillery and incorporate unique highlights and nods to the industry and its history, while prioritising light and a connection to nature – features the architectural world has come to expect from our firm.”
Each pyramid in the Kentucky Owl Part will have the same structure, but distinct wooden cladding. One has specks of diamond-shaped openings, the middle has a regular arrangement of patterns, while the last will be nearly entirely exposed. The pyramids progress from an almost fully covered one to a pyramid that looks as if its cladding has peeled away.
[Image: Virginlemon]
[Image: Virginlemon]
Whiskey will age in a series of gabled sheds, while a wooden station will be built nearby. A vintage dinner train will past through, as part of the tourist Kentucky Bourbon Trail.
Ban’s sustainable use of materials has been a staple in his career. Ban is a pioneer in environmentally conscious projects, most notably his disaster relief creations. The architect fashioned temporary shelters from paper and cardboard, offering housing to Japan flooding victims.

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