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Josef and Annie Albers Foundation, Manuel Herz Architects, Tambacounda, Hospital, Play-Time

Minimal means to maximum effect: Extension at Tambacounda hospital

The hospital in the Tambacounda region of Senegal is to be enlarged, and it is in this connection that Manuel Herz has now won a competition held by the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation for an extension to the hospital's gynaecological and paediatric clinic. The hospital, the only one in the region, serves approx. 20,000 patients a year. At present the waiting rooms are extremely overcrowded; patents wait for treatment in the corridors and ward beds have to be shared by several patients. As stated by Fox Weber, executive director of the foundation, the competition was seeking a solution for the extension that uses use minimal means to maximum effect.

The competition entry by Manuel Herz proved triumphant due to its design quality as well as its sensitivity to the local surroundings. The extension consists of an S-shaped volume connected by a covered footpath to one of the existing hospital buildings. The curvilinear ground plan of the new clinic refers to the circular buildings already existing at the site; at the same time, it creates additional outdoor spaces that can be used as gathering and resting areas. To counter the extreme climate (and lack of air conditioning), Herz has come up with a lattice-like brickwork facade that provides shade and increases air circulation.

Construction of the new clinic is slated to begin in September 2018.

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