Photo: Fly Ranch

This Is What Burning Man's Permanent Outpost Will Look Like

News Art + Architecture
by Dayana Aleksandrova Mar 17, 2021

With Burning Man being canceled in 2020 and more than likely in 2021 due to the pandemic, a new permanent outpost is emerging. Fly Ranch, a 3,800-acre ranch in Northern Nevada, will become home to a new collection of sustainable structures focusing on the following topics: food, power, water, shelter, and waste.

Burning Man has collaborated with Land Art Generator Initiative to create the LAGI 2020 Fly Ranch design challenge, which invited creatives and innovators to propose designs to steward the unique desert landscape into a spectacular work of art and livable community.

According to LAGI, “Teams were asked to integrate sustainable systems for energy, water, food, shelter, and waste management into works of art in the landscape. The objective is to build the foundational infrastructure for Fly Ranch, support Burning Man Project’s 2030 sustainability goals, and engage a global audience to work together towards systemic transformation, and serve as an inspiration for the developing field of regenerative design.”

The competition was judged by a panel made up of local Indigenous people, artists, conservationists, scientists, and landscape architects. Ten projects have been selected from hundreds of entries. Here are some of the most dramatic, revolutionary, and sustainable projects that made the final cut.

Fly Ranch lodgers Burning Man outpost

Photo: Fly Ranch

Lodgers was created by the MIT-based duo by Zhicheng Xu and Mengqi Moon. Their design for composting toilets is made of reclaimed timber and thatch and will also include an education space. The architects used a script-generated parametric design to visualize the building’s structures, which include birdhouses and beehives to accommodate some of the native species on the ranch.

fly ranch burning man outpost

Photo: Fly Ranch

Another jaw-dropping entry is The Source, which is the brainchild of Polish team Mateusz Góra and Agata Gryszkiewicz. The Source will be a spiraling structure made of tightly packed earth and will shelter orchard trees that will provide produce for Fly Ranch. The construction will also create its own microclimate, protecting the bushes and trees against the freezing temperatures of the desert night.

fly ranch solar mountain burning man outpost

Photo: Fly Ranch

The Indian duo Nuru Karim and Anuj Modi were successful with their project called Solar Mountain. The prefabricated structure made of recycled plywood will be covered in 728 solar panels to produce 300MWh of electricity per year.

fly ranch burning man outpost ripple

Photo: Fly Ranch

Ripple will be a collection of permaculture gardens laid out in concentric rings that radiate out of a geodesic dome. The remarkable structure will have space for a seed bank and a library.

the loop at fly ranch, the burning man outpost

Photo: Fly Ranch

Designed by the Swedish team Mathias Gullbrandson, Anna Johansson, Per Dahlgren, Julia Andersson, and Olle Bjerkås, the Loop, a pink circular toilet, will process human waste and convert it into fertilizer for hydroponic gardens.

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