Conor Barry

Conor Barry

New York, NY, US


Roccascalegna Observatory

This project proposes to integrate an observatory resort into the existing fabric of a medieval castle while creating a visual display that establishes a dialogue between the land and the spectacular constellations overhead. 

The entire site is transformed into a hillside galaxy. A flood of stars spills down the hill from the fortress above. To create this effect small perforations are cut into the corten steel cladding that surrounds each proposed structure. Light from inside the cabins is projected into the night, creating a stunning display visible from miles around. This earthbound constellation establishes a symbolic dialogue between the resort and the stars above.

To ensure minimal disturbance of the site both the lodgings and the pathways are nestled into the existing shape of the hill. Small strip foundations and raised pathways also reduce the building ’s contact with the ground and minimize the need for excavation. Star-gazing visitors are invited to ascend to the didactic observatory and restaurant, which are carefully knitted into the existing fabric of the fortress. An outdoor sky-walk on the roof of the restaurant also provides visitors with the opportunity to experience breathtaking views of the Italian mountains by day and the glistening heavens by night.

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Status: Competition Entry
Location: Roccascalegna, IT