Stallan-Brand architects have headed into Africa to present a masterplan to the African University of the Creative Arts and their chairman, Nobel laureate Professor Wole Soyinka.
Situated on the Lekki Peninsula at the heart of Lagos, Nigeria, the new campus will form the heart of a new district incorporating its own airport, sea port and free trade zone.
Headed by Soyinka, the first African to win a Nobel Prize, the client board were able to assess progress thus far on the plans, which have still to secure funding.
Stallan commented: “Our design approach to the project is from first principles in that we have started with a small learning group and their creative space requirements. This learning 'unit' scales up to form a studio; the studios are then multiplied to form the accommodation for a faculty and finally the faculties scale up to form a campus.
“We have in parallel to this functional scaling up of space provision developed an architectural form and language that reflects our iterative approach. We have with this campus compositional approach made direct parallels with African Art especially the role that mathematics plays in generating African patterns.
“Our masterplan is therefore designed to accept growth and respond to a changing curriculum to create a living and learning campus architecture and landscape for AUCA. The design approach also addresses winds from the ocean, our buildings orientation relative to the sun path and the tropical heat by building in from the outset robust environmental design principles. From the African art in the architecture to our site specific response we have developed a contemporary West African vernacular that has validity.”