Set in a water-laden area of south-west Bangladesh, the remote hospital aims to bring relief to the cyclone stricken communities of Satkhira. The low-cost structure responds innovatively to the challenging environmental conditions of Bengal.
The area of the coast was once filled with grain fields. With the rising of the sea the land had to be converted into shrimp fisheries. NGO Friendship commissioned the project to strengthen and empower the remote rural area.
Because of its importance in the area, water became the central theme for Kashef Chowdhury/URBANA. A canal runs through the length of the site separating inpatients and outpatients and at the same time help with cooling during the brutal summers. Rainwater is collected throughout and collected in a newly built tank.
The hospital is made up out of a meandering arrangement of smaller and larger buildings, organized around the canal that flows in between them.
A series of intimate courtyards provides hangouts for visitors and patients with views on the surroundings. Covered corridors and double-layered arches shield from the harsh sunlight.
Kashef Chowdhury used local brickwork for its resilient qualities and low cost. Openings in the brickwork provide natural ventilation.
"It is my hope that this recognition may inspire more of us to commit, not in spite of, but because of limitations of resources and means, to an architecture of care. A care both for humanity and for nature. I hope it inspires us to rise collectively to the urgencies that we face today on a planetary scale."
- Kashef Chowdhury