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Senegalese University Wins Prestigious Architecture Award In Russia

Due to their standard and unique structure, Alioune Diop University in Bambey, Senegal, was given the highest honors at the “Aga KHAN” architecture award ceremony in Kazan, Russia.

Its teaching and research department is one of the 5 Laureates of 2019, for setting new standards of excellence in architecture.

“This victory can have a great impact in Senegal and Africa because the building was created by the environment – by taking the temperature of certain local realities, etc. – it is a great one that can have a great impact on Senegal and Africa and can be replicated everywhere,“said Ibrahim Wone, chief of cabinet, ministry of higher education.

This new lecture room block at the university comprises a 500-seat amphitheatre, classrooms for 50 or 100 students, laboratories and technology rooms, and offices for lecturers in the faculty of applied sciences and ICT. The building is a simple construction of concrete blocks cast on site, covered with mortar and steel latticework. It has a large double roof and a great lattice covering the south facade, which avoids direct solar radiation but remains permeable to air. To solve the lack of sewers and water supply issues, the architects incorporated infiltration rafts with vegetation that collect rainwater, and waste water is purified through an ecologically-sound system that uses activated sludge.

Founded in 2007, as part of the government’s efforts to decentralize education and encourage young people to stay in rural areas, the university open its doors in 2012 growing in staff and adapting to the climate change in Bambey.

The architecture of the building has a bioclimatic design, due to the unique environmental resources. A large double-roofed canopy and a mesh have been installed to prevent direct sunlight and allow air to circulate through it.

“We are looking at an intelligent building that allows us to be self-sufficient in energy, which is a good thing in our countries when we know what we are paying for in terms of energy consumption. Water and acidity management is very important. Today, the water from the building is recovered in the filtered basins, which makes it possible to water the plants, while even the water from the air conditioning is recovered in these basins, which is a major innovation,” said Sidy Camara, director of environment and security, Alione Diop University.

In addition to its unprecedented structural aspect, its research helps to slow migration to urban areas.

“Most students often complete their studies in Dakar, but now they have the opportunity to do so locally, as you said, in a building that has temperature control, “ said Mahay Diaw, director, Alione Diop University.

The prestigious architecture award is given once every three years and it comes with a prize of one million US dollars.

Source: Africanews

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