When we downloaded the information regarding the different sites proposed by the competition it was difficult for us to decide which site to pursue as we have limited understanding of the conditions on both sites based on the raw data available. Hence it became critical for us to formulate a system/tools of design that could be interpreted for various sites irrespective of boundaries. Keeping this ideology in mind we decided to select Lat. 2 09’46.011”S Long 30 31’21.07”E as our probe site. In order to understand accessibility to the site we began by drawing a circle 1acre in size (depicting the built up allowed) within the site as the loci for he site. We then began to trace paths of people who would arrive at the hospital from distances out of the region as well as those within the periphery of the site which became our point of access into the site. We later moved the foci on site to various locations as to understand how these walking patterns would morph and to challenge the notion of the location of the building within the large site. Our next move was to focus on the acre and develop the overlaps in various fragmented options that could take the form of the program. We selected one of these options to take the form of our design proposal.
We have titled our proposal as Ziranenge/ Angel as we feel this project is one that a) will be responsible in bringing relief to the children and pregnant women who have limited access to such facilities b) we also feel that the project in a way would become the regions “child” where everyone around would contribute to it in some for or the other.
Our goal was to create a structure that would offer security, comfort, be cost effective and have the ability to create its own identity. We are proposing the use of Adobe bricks as they are not only sustainable but their ability age naturally and to appear as part of the landscape are essential qualities of design. An important factor in terms of design was also to propose the fortress wall as a design element that rises from the ground around the building and is carved by local artisans in a traditional fashion. The trellis provided above also rises from the ground at times is to be constructed out of dead wood found and can be built in course of time. The fabric portions of the proposal are to be considered as bed sheets or canvas to offer protection to people who have travelled for long distances to the hospital. The trellis can also be loaded with solar panels whenever the institution can afford to do so. The roofs of “Angel” are designed to collect water through gutters engraved into the slopes or at the ends of the vaulted roofs. The water is collected from the roofs and processed through an ancient traditional water purifying system designed in Mandu, India which involves the physics of processing water through centripetal and centrifugal forces to rid water of its impurities before use. All the roofs proposed are to be covered in broken china/porcelain in order to reflect heat radiations. For the children’s ward and the infant ward we have designed the wall in a way so that they may have an interaction with the outside world even though they are confined to a ward. We have designed the roof of the ward so that the children in bed can look out to the stars through little mud pods which are situated on the roof and the walls. These also add to the insulation of the walls further. We would like to incorporate local children’s art on the walls of the structure. We have limited the use of glass and stressed more on the use of intricately locally carved meshes to be used as ventilators for ventilation and cooling purposes. The room for HIV prevention is incorporated with a niche to place a computer and screen to transmit information to all passers by. The amphitheatre is designed to be in close proximity to the HIV room so it can work as an informal space for conversations or seminars. As part of our escape strategy in case of any catastrophe we are proposing a hot air balloon that may be used to transport the patients from one place to another. The balloon also acts as a marker in the sky indicating the presence of an “Angel”.
In time we believe we will be able to create Angels all over Rwanda and they will formulate their own healing constellation which grows from one to two to three to an entire network of angels where each one is designed by the process of understanding the existing conditions with viable solutions that lead to their integration into the fabric of the country.