18 junho 2021

Exemplo_Emergency Children’s Surgery Center_Uganda

© Photos: Archivio Emergency
Emergency Children’s Surgery Center_Uganda
Place: Entebbe, Uganda
Year: 2013-in progress
Client: Emergency
Design Studio: Renzo Piano Building Workshop & TAMassociati, architects (Venice)
with EMERGENCY NGO - Building and Technical Division and Milan ingegneria

The new Uganda Pediatric Surgery Center by Renzo Piano, located south of the city of Kampala, on the north shore of Lake Victoria, Uganda, is not only a quality hospital, but a building that enriches its environment in different ways. The hospitals of the Italian NGO Emergency provide medical assistance, and also function as training centers for local doctors and nurses, who are thus not forced to leave to complete their specialties, often without returning to their countries. In this type of endowments, the recent graduates can work from the beginning in facilities whose equipment is comparable to that of the western medical centers.
In addition, the centers of this type are also architectural models for the region: rational buildings, advanced from the point of view of energy saving (has 5,000 square meters of photovoltaic panels donated by Enel Greenpower) and the use of resources and systems local constructions (compacted earth walls). The hospital is located on a wooded hill that falls towards Lake Victoria. It is protected by large horizontal decks, and divided into three parallel wings around a central pavilion with the operating rooms and the ICU. The spatial focus of the building is its central garden, with a large tree inside.
Project description by Renzo Piano
'Our vision of Africa has recently undergone a slow but steady development, from neglected continent to the new frontier of an evolving world. The challenge of this new project of Emergency NGO is to combine the practical requirements of a pediatric surgery hospital in Africa with the desire to create a model piece of architecture: rational, tangible, modern, beautiful, but firmly linked to tradition. It will be more than a mere hospital: it will be the first architectural work in Africa designed by someone who, over the past decades, has actually written the story of architecture. This project is a sign of extreme symbolic importance for the promotion of health care and culture in Uganda, and in the entire Africa.
Earth is the raw material used to build the homes of the poorest people in most parts of the world. It’s a simple, cheap building technique but one which, in Africa, is associated by most people with a past of poverty that needs to be forgotten. We were fascinated by the idea of giving back some dignity to this technique, using the excavated land to build the load-bearing walls with the rammed earth technique. The rammed earth technique is an ancient building method involving a mixture of earth, sand, gravel, binding agents and a little water, compressed in wooden or metal frames or moulds. The great advantage is that the material is available locally, and there’s no need for cement or highly specialised workers.
An eye on sustainability, right from the construction phase.
This building, born from the earth, will get its energy from the sun. Indeed, the roof will be made from a suspended trellis structure supporting 9,800 square metres of photovoltaic panels (equal to the surface of a football pitch). This system will ensure that the hospital has an autonomous electricity supply during the day. It will also be connected to the main line, to provide energy to the surrounding area at times when consumption is low. The photovoltaic roof, “floating” above the building, will also guarantee shade for the hospital and all the uncovered walkways.'

Rammed earth wall in progress

© Photos: Archivio Emergency

© Photo: Giorgio Grandi

Link to the project story here

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