MASA Studio was recently the 1st place winner project in the International Design Competition “Hostel for Hope”. Their project won the 1st prize in the Professional Category of International Design Competition “Hostel for Hope” organized by NGO Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon, American Cancer Society, the George W. Bush Institute, HKS Inc. and ngo T-MARC.
The winners were announced on World Cancer Day (February 4, 2017) in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. MASA Studio was there to receive the award from Ministry of Health and CEO of Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon.Participants in the competition were invited to submit a design about a building for the hospital stay and rehabilitation of women affected by cancer in Mwanza, close to the Bugando Medical Centre (BMC) and close to the Victoria Lake.
The idea for project research is born from the desire to respect and recreate the characteristics of the rural areas of sub-Saharan Africa, present place of majority guests for the future hostel. The study of the characteristic organization and the type of households in rural areas is the starting point of the project, these are made up of different units protected by a fence or a borderline defined.
The project stems from a single square regular module of two dimensions: 8x8m (64 square meters) for public space and 6x6m (36 square meters) for private space (rooms for guests and staff). The volume of the monolithic module is characterized by high walls and massive mono – textural walls opening in the roof and allowing the diffusion of the scattered light into the interior, hair circulation and cross ventilation.
The aggregation of these modules and the strong distinctive unifying element contribute to form the hostel architecture definition and the delimitation and creation of architectural space. A linear platform/cover with parallel floor/concrete plate, as a sandwich panel, join and connect the volumes in a single element, but dynamic and flexible.
The units will be assembled under a cover/plate, which becomes new virtual security fence, but at the same time performs precise bioclimatic and energy functions. The cover plate generates protected areas, allows the management and flow distribution, ensures community life and filters the public and private areas while protecting the privacy of the hostel guests; at the same time it connects together the paths of the units and rooms that open to the landscape, as an African rural village.
The cover respects the modules, which emerge with their characteristic top. The arrangement of the units under the common plate allows a strong space flexibility and transparency to both transverse and longitudinal directions, generating different perspective views to the landscape and especially towards the Victoria Lake.
The volumes projected for sanitary facilities (latrines) and technological systems (back-up generators and waste recycling) are organize efficiently along major routes but far from the rooms occupied by guests, in order to control the infections problems. The latrines were designed according to the standards and guidelines laid down by the UNHCR (Institutional Latrines).
The main building materials are chosen with the intention of engaging the community through the construction process: all the load-bearing masonry of the modules are made of bricks manufactured on site using local materials and assembled by native labor force.
All paths converge toward the plate and the common spaces that are created under it: in this way the areas where the main flows intersect become meeting, socialization and sharing places. The wooden paths become also support elements for the systems distribution between the different modules, such as the electrical systems and for patient monitoring and staff-patient communications. The structure may open to the territory and the local community: the single module that with a long linear path runs out into the lake can be open and accessible to the local community for leisure, recreational, therapeutic and psychological support meetings.
This area does not disturb hostel guests being far away from the plate and the other units. The different modules of the rooms of the hostel’s guests guarantee privacy and relaxation to the occupants. Each module is equipped with outdoor spaces protected by mosquito nets, integrated with the architecture, and enjoy the view of Lake Victoria and the surrounding nature and is handicap-accessible. The construction phase will start within a few months.
LOCATION: Mwanza, Tanzania
ARCHITECTS: MASA Studio
DESIGNER/AUTHOR: Emanuele Santini
ARCHITECT IN CHARGE: Emanuele Santini, Sara Marinucci
COLLABORATORS: Valentino Proietti, Valerio Faraglia
CONSULTANT: Maria Grazia Spedicato
CLIENT: Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon