On the River Congo along the northern edge of Brazzaville is the town of Kintele, the chosen location for a new university campus designed by IAD. The 176,000 sq m campus will encompass 25 buildings with capacity for 30,000 students when it completes in 2016.
This specific site was selected for multiple reasons, including the lack of deforestation needed, accessibility from the main road and the beautiful views over the nearby River Congo. Part of a public-private partnership with Unicon Development, the university will be a modern polytechnic institution merging traditional teaching methods with technical training.
At the core of this scheme are the potential future growth of West Africa’s economy and the environmental impact of major construction projects such as this. IAD explains: “The campus project had to be adapted to this African reality by proposing simple, technically accessible and energy-efficient solutions without hindering the contemporary and international architectural image requested by the client.
“This will to provide high levels of comfort, adjusted to the local site, culture and its inhabitants has allowed us to suggest simple, sometimes basic and ancient solutions in order to create the desired atmosphere.” These energy-efficient solutions include solar panels for water heating, collection of rainwater, controlled and homogeneous irrigation through the strategic use of earthworks, draft chimneys for ventilation and thermal comfort, and natural ventilation coupled with adiabatic cooling panel systems.
Once completed the campus will include: a rectory; four university services buildings; ten scientific and pedagogic facilities; a library; an amphitheatre; a canteen; and three sports facilities (a 5,000-seat stadium, Olympic certified swimming pool with bubbled ETFE roof and a multi-sport hall with 2,000 seats).