Source: www.warminghuts.com

A team of Dalhousie architecture alumni was one of three winners of this year’s Warming Huts competition in Winnipeg.

Lisa Tondino (MArch’94), Alexandra Bolen (MArch’12), Mathew Rodrigues (BEDS’16), and Drew Klassen (MArchFP’92) entry is Titled Ice Lantern.


Ice Lantern is an elemental design based on the archetype of the primitive hut. It is comprised of two main parts: a lantern hovers lightly above the snow, its white glow beckoning skaters, skiers, bikers and pedestrians to warmth; and an iglu snow-mound structure holds the lantern in place, owing to the weight of the snow and ice. The snow-mound also functions as a gathering space, a naturally insulated dugout with built wood-bench seats.

A sliver-sized break between snow and sky frames the horizon for hut visitors. Open ventilation at the top of the lantern invites users to gaze up to the stars and clouds. Soft light is cast upward as well as out against the nylon fabric, animating Platonic shadows that allow the observer to contemplate universals which cannot be perceived directly.


Started in 2009, Warming Huts: An Art + Architecture Competition on Ice has been melding world-class design and art with Winnipeg’s famous winters. The competition has seen entries from across the globe and caught the attention of international architecture publications and awards, as well as admiration from newspapers such as the New York Times.

Warming Huts is an open competition, endorsed by the Manitoba Association of Architects. Once entries are submitted, a blind jury selects designs that best “push the envelope of design, craft and art.”


Nearing the end of January, competition winners travel to Winnipeg to begin construction on their warming hut. The weeklong building blitz gives designers a chance to watch their vision come to life while allowing the public to watch them at work

Warming huts are then brought out to the Red River Mutual Trail for visitors to skate to, interact with, and enjoy. Warming huts will remain out until the end of the skating season.