New technology campus takes a large step forwards for Libya
This project for a 45 hectare University campus to the west of Tripoli, Libya is a priority for the central government in their policies of social reform and opening of the country.
The campus design can be considered as the multidisciplinary result of collaborations between expert consultants reunited under the exigencies and concept of the Libyan Government agency ‘ODAC’ and their London-based project manager Hill International. From a nation-wide masterplan and pedagogical programming scheme undertaken by architectural firms such as BDP and RMJM and space-planning and educational consultor Roy Newton, chair of RIBA’s ‘Higher Education Design Quality Client Forum’ to the Stage E and F design and build consultation of IAD, 40 under 40, 2008 winners a young and dynamic international firm with ample experience in the delivery of spectacular large-scale projects, the campus has the clear vocation to assert itself as an example of pedagogical design for the 21st century.
This design team, led by IAD and complemented by Arup Spain is currently delivering working drawings, general design and construction consultancy for the 13 buildings of high architectural quality that comprise the campus, totalling 95,000 m2. The campus planning concept promotes the articulation between a meandering pedestrian ‘ribbon’ that passes through and links a series of interlocking courtyards enclosed by the faculty buildings and support facilities. The intention is the creation of a compact, clear-cut, stimulating environment for teaching and progressive levels of academic development. The standardised faculty building design incorporates visual and programmatical variations as a response to the requirements of each specific functional and pedagogical needs.
The studied application of the pedagogical paradigm of ‘learn anywhere, anytime’, aims to encourage academic and social integration in order to guarantee a maximum interdisciplinarity. Lecture theatres, external IT pods (seminar spaces), and singular ‘egg-pod’ study and meeting spaces all clad in copper constitute special architectural elements which provide ample, flexible teaching spaces. In general, the extensive use of integrated and adaptable IT services to support the fullest exploitation possible of computer based teaching methods.
At the Seventh of April Technological campus, sustainability is key to the design plans. Team leaders Cottrell & Michelangeli say: “a particular emphasis has been placed on environmental sustainability, as well as energy and water management throughout the complex. A solar plant is planned in conjunction with campus infrastructure. The buildings are oriented and designed for an optimised solar and thermal control, adapted to the coastal area of Zuwarah. The buildings aim to accomplish the high requirements of LEED certification.”