Dacha on wheels: the wooden summer home that travels with you

Dacha on wheels: the wooden summer home that travels with you

20 January 2021

If you’re looking for a sleek, sustainable mobile home, Project Datcha is your answer.

Designed by Anna Busch and architect Monika Binkowska, Project Datcha fits a kitchen, bathroom, and a sleeping loft in 18-square metres, with a four-metre high ceiling.

Bringing together Busch’s Polish childhood memories of her grandmother’s campervan and her German husband’s love of minimalism, Project Datcha has become the couple’s holiday home over the past year.

“My family did not have a countryside home, but we had an old caravan parked on a beautiful meadow nearby Krakow,” Busch told The Calvert Journal. “Together with my babcia [grandmother], I spent many happy summers living there, with just cold water, a camping stove, and a simple outhouse. These are nevertheless my fondest childhood memories.”

Having moved across different cities and countries since graduating high school, Busch started working on Project Datcha to meet her husband’s commitment to a minimalist, non-consumerist life. “Buying the simplest products, such as socks or extra plates, is always accompanied by his nagging question: ‘Do we really need it?’” Busch admits. She says that for them, building a minimalist holiday house on wheels was the “obvious” decision.

It took one year to build the home, alongside their full time jobs, and with help from Busch’s parents, architects Barbara and Andrzej Adamczyk. Some technical difficulties slowed down the process: in order to get towing permission, the house had to meet the same legal requirements as a truck trailer, both in terms of dimensions and weight. In order to keep the construction light, they used aluminium windows and balsa plywood.

Since finalising it, the pair have travelled with the van from Poland to Austria. The van is currently parked next to Packer Lake, but in the spring, they want to take it to the Austrian mountains for a year, and then move to Albania.

Having had requests to sell the campervan, Busch and Binkowska are planning to replicate it. Until then, they are also renting the van out.

Find out more here.

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