Molding the Hospital
Manuel Herz build a new maternity and pediatric ward for the campus of Tambacounda Hospital in Senegal, winding its way for 125 meters in a serpentine curve. The two-story structure functions in an up to 40 degrees Celsius outdoor-climate without any air conditioning and formulates through its shape new in-door and out-door spaces for patients as well as their visitors.
When Manuel Herz designed a new maternity and pediatric ward for the campus of Tambacounda Hospital in Senegal, he chose to build a hospital with red-colored bricks that can be produced and assembled by local workers while also creating a pleasant indoor climate. Winding its way for 125 meters in a serpentine curve, the two-story structure is a surprisingly subtle addition to the 1970s hospital complex, formulating new in-door and out-door spaces for patients and their visitors. According to the architect, the key challenge was “to make the building as narrow as possible to encourage cross-ventilation, while creating as much space as possible for hanging out.” This might seem surprising at first, but under the given circumstances, which include patients and their dependents mostly traveling long distances from all parts of Senegal or even across borders, the hospital becomes an important place for not only health care but as a meeting point and shelter as well.
The story Oliver Wainwright tells in archithese’s latest Swiss Performance almost seems like a smorgasbord of coincidences, expanding from Anni and Josef Alber’s work at the Bauhaus in the 1920s, to a dermatology clinic in today’s Paris. To discover the many secrets behind the construction of the new hospital ward in Senegal and to find out how cross-ventilation has made air conditioning redundant, we warmly recommend Oliver Wainwright‘s article about this very different kind of hospital.
> For the Austrian pavilion at Expo 2020 in Dubai, the architectural office querkraft’s intention was to learn from their host country’s vernacular way of building. Learn more about the loam construction in a comment here.