Mathews Architecture

Swannanoa 4-H Cabins

With our extensive background in renovation as well as design for recreational and educational facilities, Mathews Architecture was selected by NC State University to help plan for renovations and additions to the cabins it owns and manages at the Swannanoa 4-H Education Center, the oldest 4-H camp in the state, opened in 1929.

Designs were prepared with the capacity of the individual cabins being increased from 16 campers with 2 counselors, to 20 campers with 4 counselors. Each cabin became a duplex, being subdivided into two equal and self-contained sides, each with its own entrance. The existing single bathroom was removed and replaced by two separate ones with new fixtures throughout, and externally a central screened porch was added as a communal gathering place.

 The cabins were insulated and new plumbing, mechanical and electrical systems were installed, including a furnace for ducted hot-air heating. Efficient wall construction, natural ventilation and extensive use of daylighting together with occupancy sensors contribute to the overall energy efficiency of these renovated cabins. Access into these cabins was achieved by a wood ramp bridge from the front entrance deck across to a new concrete sidewalk on the upslope side of each cabin, leading to a dedicated ADA parking space and adjacent access aisle.

One of the ADA- compliant Swannanoa 4-H cabins after renovation and expansion.
ADA-compliant cabin.
The cabins before renovation.
During construction
Site plan of the Swannanoa 4-H camp showing the location of the cabins.
Plan of the ADA cabin showing how it was enlarged.
Plan of the ADA cabin showing the functions of the different areas.
Proposed plan of the standard cabin showing how it will be enlarged.
Proposed plan of the standard cabin showing the functions of each area.
Bunk space before and after
Shower room before and after
Restroom before and after