- Project Name
- District Hospitals Ghana
- Adjaye Associates
- Hospital Infrastructure Group Ltd.
- Project Types
- Project Scope
- New Construction
- 91,493 sq. feet
- Shared by
- Madeleine D'Angelo
- Project Status
- On the Boards/In Progress
This project was named an Citation winner in the 69th Annual Progressive Architecture Awards, and was featured in the March 2022 issue of ARCHITECT.
“There’s an emphasis on outdoor space and that you gain your health by being outdoors, feeling the sun on your skin, and getting fresh air. It’s doing a lot with minimal means.” — Juror Kai-Uwe Bergmann, FAIA
Flexible, economical, and deeply rooted in place, the District Hospitals proposal for Ghana from the Accra studio of Adjaye Associates marks a new chapter in the firm’s commitment to creating high-quality design in sub-Saharan Africa. The hospital scheme imagines a network of more than 100 new health centers constructed throughout the country, each a self-sustaining one-story complex containing all the necessary facilities to provide modern medical care in cities, towns, and countryside alike. Three features in particular bear out the design’s suitability to both the material and cultural conditions in Ghana: First, the use of prefabricated components, assembled Erector Set–fashion, makes the program adaptable to any site and any community; next, an intelligent response to climate, focusing on rainwater collection, shading, and courtyard gardens, ensures that each hospital provides a cool and comfortable environment for patients and staff; and lastly, a surprising symbolic element—evidenced in the plan’s central spine and branching arms—connects the project to the Denkyem, a crocodile figure that frequently appears in regional mythology in association with resilience and tenacity. Enhancing the design’s legibility and accessibility to its intended users, the formal gesture once again demonstrates Adjaye Associates’ keen, artistic approach to building in West Africa.
FROM THE ARCHITECTS:
The District Hospitals presents an opportunity to transform Ghana’s medical system by establishing unparalleled access to healthcare facilities throughout the country. Guided by the ambition to define a next-generation hospital experience, the design concept merges 21st century technology with a contextual and holistic approach crucial to the delivery of state-of-the art healthcare.
Each hospital facility is planned as a single-story campus featuring Patient Reception & Processing, Administration, Pharmacy, Labs / Diagnostics, OPD, Physiotherapy, Public Health, A&E, Surgical Ward, Pediatric Ward, Maternity Ward, Isolation Ward and Surgery. The primary care facilities are then supported by other structures such as: Mortuary, Waiting Pavilions, Security Pavilions, Residences for Families and Doctors (separated), Laundry, Waste Management, Energy Centre, Kitchen, Central Store, and Maintenance Yard
Unlocking the centuries old wisdom of the Adinkra symbols, our design sought inspiration from the Denkyem, which symbolizes a crocodile—a creature able to thrive with both air and water that is celebrated for its adaptability and intelligence. Acknowledging that the building design will need to adapt to over 101 locations in different urban and rural settings across the country, the design scheme embraces smart strategies and ecologically responsive systems able to conform to each unique geographic condition. The use of prefabricated systems work conductively with materials to maintain the lowest possible carbon footprint whilst also maximizing the ability to reproduce efficiently and rapidly.
Departing from the assumed poor industry standards of hospitals where visitors often feel lost on arrival, the form of the building becomes a tool for wayfinding with a defined canopied entrance that guides you into the heart of the building. Through a language of clustered horizontal and vertical bars, the building branches out from a central spine that is activated by a central garden and a series of nature-filled public spaces. Easily identified by the lush landscaping situated within the center of the single story campus’, the introduction of public gardens departs from the status quo of hospital design where all spaces are entirely enclosed and sterile. Instead, the central garden and the ancillary green spaces punctuate the plan and provide an overall atmosphere of healing crucial for patients.
The patient ward is situated at the outermost perimeter along the rear of the building to ensure natural light and open-air flow, crucial for health and healing. Designed for their specific functionality, the building’s are differentiated through their roof structures: gable or Butterfly. For programmes such as the patient wards, the Butterfly Roof is used to maximize the amount of natural light and cross ventilation resulting in less energy consumption for artificial lighting and excessive mechanical cooling.
In contrast to the patient wards where maximized light and airflow are welcomed, other spaces such as surgery require a more controlled environment. In these instances, the Gable Roof typology is deployed. This ensures minimum exposure to the natural elements using the roof’s long overhangs to protect against the sun’s rays and provide shade on the building envelope. Despite the differences in the roof structures, both types effectively harvest rain water and provide an insulated shell to minimize heat gain on the building interiors.
Architects: Adjaye Associates
Design Consultant: Sutherland & Sutherland Architects
Biomed: Titan Biomedical Engineering
Electrical Engineer: Global Engineering & Technology
Kitchen Consultant: Smollensky’s
Hospital Consultant: Ministry of Health
Landscape: Brix Landscaping
Mechanical Engineer: Global Engineering & Technology
QS: CC&M Consult Ltd.
Structural & Mechanical Engineer: CSEng