HIVE and COOP: Designer Homes for Bees and Chickens
Last Friday I attended the Cleveland 2012 Year of Local Food event downtown at City Hall. While there, I met Timothy Riffle, who is a woodcarver and historic specialist who has designed some interesting beehives and chicken coops designed for urban settings. He had several beehives on display, and I spent some time talking to him about his unique designs of beehives and chicken coops.
Thinking about raising chickens in the future, but aren’t thrilled about having a clunky wood box in your backyard? Riffle’s designs, under the name of HIVE and COOP are more of an artistic home for bees and chickens.
One design is the Urbanite – which is blue and has a modern design/ trailer look and feel. Another is called the Usonian, and is named after a Frank Lloyd Wright design. This beehive is made of wood and has a curved slanted copper roof. The hives are all “top bar” hives, where bees build the hive down from a single bar at the top. The hives are lighter and cleaner – but it takes a little longer to harvest the honey.
Urban farming? Designer architecture? Hive and Coop is both – and once my city (Cleveland Heights) passes an ordinance to have chickens – I might look into one of Riffle’s designs for my yard.