Francis Kéré, Surgical and Health Center in Léo (Burkina Faso)
Photo: Iwan Baan
Photos: Kéré Architecture
Health is a luxury in Africa, especially for the rural population, which lives so far from the few hospitals and healthcare centers of quality that exist in the countryside, such facilities tending to concentrate in capitals and large cities. This surgery and general medical center helps address such deficiencies in southern Burkina Faso, in Sissili Province, serving some 50,000 people living in or in the vicinity of the city of Léo.
The complex is a series of modules arranged along a central street like houses in a village, creating a familiar environment and atmosphere. Adding to this reinterpretation of traditional urban schemes is the use of materials, skills, and ecological strategies of vernacular origin: the walls are built with bricks of rammed earth, the thermal mass of which makes it easier to regulate temperature indoors; the ventilated double roofs give protection against the sun by dissipating radiation; and a simple system collects rainwater for use in irrigating the trees around.
analyzes in each issue a theme related to a city, a country, a tendency or an
architect, with articles by leading specialists complemented by commentary on works
and projects illustrated in detail. Published bilingually, with Spanish and English
texts placed side by side.
covers current topics, taking stock of recent trends in set sections: cover story,
works and projects, art and culture, books, technique and innovation. From 2013
on, monthly and bilingual, with Spanish and English texts printed side by side.
is the third member of the AV family: a bilingual publication essentially focussed
on design projects (with special attention on competitions and construction details),
heretofore only laterally dealt with in the other two magazines.