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4.0 :Exchangetap
ARC Ghana
tapping local resources for sustainable development
A collaborative symposium between
ARC and #...
Thursday 9th October 2014
Dear friends and colleagues:
Welcome to tap:Exchange 4.0 - tapping local resources for sustainab...
Some macro benefits of this programme are as follows;
	 1. Reduce construction cost.
	 2. Provide employment for the youth...
#tapping local resources
For this symposium, the Architects’ Project wishes to open up a dialogue between all actors of th...
15:30 arrivals.
	16:00 - Welcome notes by Arc. Stella N.D. Arthiabah, Registrar ARC
16:15 talks. built project presentatio...
talks.AQUA SAFARI RESORT
Bricklane Development Group
The house design is very elementary, as it is the composition of three independent volumes (activity room,
bedrooms, and w...
Earth Bag building is a do-it-yourself approach, which builds on the common methods of traditional Atakpamé
construction (...
Aqua Safari Resort is a luxurious 71-bed hotel facility located along the banks of the Volta River in Big Ada
(which is an...
exhibition.
AKOSOMBO RETREAT
orthner orthner & associates
+ Dr Lesley Lokko
The Mikelle House is a natural residence, designed to blend seamlessly with the environment through the
use of local mater...
BUILD WITH EARTH WORKSHOP IN GHANA
A House for 5 people
Location: Abetenim Arts Village (Juben), Ashanti Region, Ghana
Cos...
GLOBAL MAMAS FAIR TRADE ZONE
Project Partners
- Global Mamas: www.globalmamas.org
- Architecture Sans Frontières – UK (ASF...
LABADI BEACH HOTEL, ACCRA
Sustainable Materials in Hotel developments
One of West Africa’s leading hotels, having suffered...
AKOSOMBO RETREAT
Published in Phaidon Atlas of Contemporary World Architecture
orthner orthner & associates
& Dr. Lesley L...
KINKA HÉ LEISURE SETTING
Location: Usshertown, Accra
This project is part of a design thesis submitted to the Department o...
thearchitectsproject.org
Architects
Registration
Council Ghana
The
Architects'
Project#tap
Ministry of Water Resources,
Wo...
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tap:Exchange 4.0 Tapping Local Resources Programme

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Tapping Local Resources for Sustainable Development
A collaborative symposium between ARC and #tap to promote the use of local materials in Ghana’s building and construction industry.

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tap:Exchange 4.0 Tapping Local Resources Programme

  1. 1. 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana tapping local resources for sustainable development A collaborative symposium between ARC and #tap to promote the use of local materials in Ghana’s building and construction industry. thearchitectsproject.org Architects Registration Council Ghana The Architects' Project#tap Ministry of Water Resources, Works and Housing Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation
  2. 2. Thursday 9th October 2014 Dear friends and colleagues: Welcome to tap:Exchange 4.0 - tapping local resources for sustainable development We hope you enjoy today’s symposium of presentations, discussions, exhibitions and social networking themed on the above subject. The selection of case studies exploring completed projects, on-site and on-going projects, and speculative projects from an array of contributors in the building industry are aimed at equipping relevant actors in the field with applicable knowledge and understanding of the use of local resources for sustainable development. Sincerely, The Organising Team
  3. 3. Some macro benefits of this programme are as follows; 1. Reduce construction cost. 2. Provide employment for the youth especially within the localities of the processing plants and the areas with ongoing construction. 3. Retain foreign exchange capital. 4. Improve upon the ambience of the local built environment The positive multiplier effect of these benefits cannot be over emphasized. To ensure the feasibility and sustainability of the programme, government, through the Architects Registration Council, is sensitizing the various levels of the built environment professionals on the need to use Local Building Materials in their construction projects. The ARC has organized a number of seminars bringing together expertsin the research, development and production of some LBMs, built environment professionals and the general public which were very successful. A competition on the use of LBMs was also held to encourage built environment professionals to explore new and innovative ways of employing them in design and construction. Through feedback, the ARC has observed one major challenge being the availability, standardization and perception of the Ghanaian on the use of LBMs. The Architects’ Project has so far formed a strong network of young built environment and allied professionals who have a passion for promoting and utilizing available local resources to create innovative designs and construction techniques. With the collaboration between the Architects Registration Council (on the LBM programme) and The Architects’ Project (on the tap:Exchange programme), the ARC will reach the young and upcoming professionals with rich and unlimited ideas on The Architects’ Project’s platforms as peer advocates. We believe our collaborative effort will produce the expected impact on stakeholders to help us achieve the multiplier benefits as Ghanaian built environment professionals. ARC: LBM, the SPECIFIER, GHANA Background Information Physical development is an expensive venture. More than eighty five percent (85%) of materials for construction are imported. The basic construction material used in Ghana, cement, is produced from imported clinker and gypsum at an average annual cost of One Hundred and Eighty Million U.S. Dollars ($180,000,000.00) to the country. The cost of a fifty kilo bag of cement has increased from Ghc 3.20 to Ghc 31.00 in the past decade, an increase of over 720%. This high cost of imported construction materials is not only as a result of price hikes emanating from an unstable foreign currency exchange rate but also the profit mark up of players in the supply chain process of these materials. This has adversely affected the construction of critical facilities for nation building overtime, some of which include education and health facilities and houses. Currently, Ghana has a housing deficit of over a million units in urban centers. This simply means a very high demand for both domestic and non-domestic accommodation thereby driving rents upwards. There is however, abundant, diverse raw material in the country which can be used in the construction industry. These include clay, lime, laterite, both soft and hard wood, various types of rock deposits just to mention a few. Some of these raw materials can be found in most districts within the country. Government Intervention With this background, the government of Ghana, acting through the Ministry of Environment, Science Technology Innovation and the Ministry of Water Resources, Works and Housing has prepared a policy on the utilization of local building materials in the construction industry. This policy seeks to ensure that by the year 2015, at least 60% of materials used in the building and construction industry shall be indigenous raw materials. Local building materials such as pozzolana cement, bamboo, clay brick and tile to mention a few are being promoted to drive the interest in their use for construction. There is also a compilation of useful empirical data on some local building materials by stakeholder Ministries, Departments and Agencies for public use. Government is also encouraging private sector in establishing plants to process these raw materials for use in the construction industry. Currently, some micro and small scale establishments are being equipped on periodic basis on skills and equipment upgrade by COTVET…..and other institutions. 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 04 05
  4. 4. #tapping local resources For this symposium, the Architects’ Project wishes to open up a dialogue between all actors of the built environment, including policy makers (government agencies), practitioners (architects, engineers, contractors, etc) and developers (private and public sector developers), with the aim of identifying an approach towards a sustainable development in the building industry. Architects and actors in the building industry have the power to influence a more sustainable urban and rural Ghana in terms of development (economic, social, environmental, etc). We strive to develop Ghana but does development mean we should source the most part of what we use from foreign countries? To the point where we need to source the skills required for construction techniques and materials from foreign countries too? Can we sustain this approach? Further to my curiosity, I’m keen to explore how, who and what influences our design/construction palette; and a way forward to change perceptions on the use of local materials in contemporary architecture - there’s an urgent need for innovation. JULIET SAKYI-ANSAH RIBA Part 2; Probationer GIA Founder, The Architects’ Project THE ARCHITECTS’ PROJECT The Architects’ Project or #tap in short, is an automous initiative focused on advancing the cause of context- specific architectural learning and practice using a ‘bottom-up approach’. #tap engages all actors in the built environment, i.e. thinkers, users and makers. The initiative started in December 2013 with three key programmes: tap:Exchange, tap:Build and tap:Journal. tap:Exchange + is a component of tap, which comes under the umbrella of tapping Ghana; + is concerned with both the education and practice of architecture in Ghana; + is a real live platform for constructive critical thinkers, doers, and users of the built environment; + feeds into the Research strand of tap’s overall agenda; the part where we identify and understand the common problems; + wants to bring together local and international researchers and practitioners, groups and/or individuals, to provide solutions to the common problems; and + is held every quarter of the year – a tap year runs from December to September. tap:Build + project facilitates learning through making; + is where we achieve innovative design through research, and research through design; + is a design process coupled with the challenge of building live, for live clients; and + explores the relationship between the design process and the construction process. Find out more about the tap:Build team and how you can get involved by emailing juliet@thearchitectsproject. org. Or you can get in touch about for a collaboration. tap:Journal + is an annual publication, rounding up each year, always with other related matters in the built environment; + is a peer-reviewed journal which brings both academic and practice work in Ghana together for national and international consumption; and + intends to make knowledge in the field accessible and relative to the local context. 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 06 07
  5. 5. 15:30 arrivals. 16:00 - Welcome notes by Arc. Stella N.D. Arthiabah, Registrar ARC 16:15 talks. built project presentations Arch. Giulia Fortunato Arc. Daniel Kwadwo Teye Hon. Johnny Osei Kofi Brandon Rogers 17:30 exchange. interactive session Moderators - Arc. Kwadwo Abankwa - Arc. Nana Akua Oppong MCs - Arc. Robert Frakue - Arc. Kofi Koomson 18:30 exhibition. cocktails. social networking 17:30 close. SYMPOSIUM PROGRAMME tapping local resources for sustainable development 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 08 09
  6. 6. talks.AQUA SAFARI RESORT Bricklane Development Group
  7. 7. The house design is very elementary, as it is the composition of three independent volumes (activity room, bedrooms, and washroom) gathered under the same roof. This idea of composition affecting the use and shape of both the interior and the exterior spaces comes from the direct observation of the life in Ghanaian rural villages: functions are usually scattered in the village, and people share spaces to cook, eat, sojourn. The entire building is laid on a concrete platform, an area defined by the projection of the roof above, where a portico with teak columns for open air sojourning looking east is also realized. Using the Atakpame method, the house walls are entirely made of earth: the main innovation consisting on the fact that not only the walls lay on top of a concrete foundation, to visually and physically lift the building from the ground… but the corners are made with concrete blocks, in order to have the walls well straight. The roof is made of wooden beams and metal sheets, it lays on a top concrete lentil and thanks to its double inclination lets natural light get into the activity room; earth walls are plastered and protected from rain thanks to roof projection all around the building (1,5 meters). Interior furniture such as beds is in atakpame too, while windows are in wood; the bedrooms’ are traditional wooden windows, while the activity room and wash room have tailor-made wooden windows. The walls are now finished and the roof is expected for next month. Together with 16 students of architecture, I dedicated my time and efforts to the realization of a house made with natural materials and built with traditional Ghanaian techniques. The building consumes very low energy, costs little money, and can be dismantled and reused to build another. In Africa the intelligent use of natural resources in architecture and construction (such as earth, wood, straw bales, water) acquires a very important meaning: if these are responsible for ensuring a continuously healthy planet, it is in this very part of the world that these resources are immediately at hand. I think this very positive situation can help economic and social development and give many benefits in terms of comfort and quality of life to local population, while safeguarding the natural and cultural environment. BUILD WITH EARTH - WORKSHOP IN GHANA 2014 Location: Abetenim Arts Village (Juben), Ashanti Region, Ghana Cost of Project: Approximately 5000.00 EUR Construction Duration: 4 Months Project Blog: www.rammedeartharchitecture.wordpress.com Arch. GIULIA FORTUNATO Architect and Designer, Ph.D. – UN volunteering Program 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 12 13
  8. 8. Earth Bag building is a do-it-yourself approach, which builds on the common methods of traditional Atakpamé construction (a process of hand packing clay soil to form mud walls, which has been used for thousands of years). The technique incorporates a method of flexible formed rammed earth, now more commonly known as Earth Bag or Sand Bag building. This method involves filling large polypropylene bags (rice sacks) with ordinary clay soil, similarly used for traditional mud buildings. The bags are then arranged in well laid out wall courseS and rammed solid with large mallets. Each additional course of sacks are staggered to allow overlapping. Individual lines of barbwire are used to create a scratch bond that helps prevent slippage as the walls rise. The wall system is structurally reinforced with a continuous concrete bond beam (lintel) and columns and rendered smooth with a plaster finish. Overall the Earth Bag building method is proven to produce stronger sturdy wall masses that keep you cooler during hot days. - This process of sustainable, eco-building is being promoted both as an advancement of the traditional methods of Atakpamé construction and as an alternative to standard practices of solid, sand-crete block construction done in rural communities. EARTH-BAG BUILDING A practical alternative to the traditional Atakpamé technique of mud building used throughout rural communities Creatively I strive to define an authentic modern African design style, which moulds to the contextual surroundings of the land and reflects the culture and traditions of the people. I have dedicated my time, energy and skills towards the research, development and experimentation of alternative green building techniques, in order to determine efficient methods of affordable housing for rural communities throughout Africa. My goal is to use my background in architectural studies, green building and computer animation to showcase viable approaches and to train individuals on the methods and benefits of these techniques. With positive youth- to-youth development campaigns we can begin to teach both future home owners and builders on the many benefits of green building. – LET’S BUILD A BETTER TOMORROW. Hope for Africa’s principle is to help build a strong, perpetual, economic, cultural, and spiritual bridge between Africa and the African Diaspora for the greater development of Africa both continentally and globally. BRANDON ROGERS Architectural Intern / Project Coordinator Hope for Africa Eco Village-NGO 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 14 15
  9. 9. Aqua Safari Resort is a luxurious 71-bed hotel facility located along the banks of the Volta River in Big Ada (which is an hour and a half’s drive from Accra). It comprises generally of 1, 2 & 3 bedroom chalets and blocks of en-suited rooms. The facility also has a reception/lounge, conference facilities, an outdoor restaurant, swimming pool, bars, a boat house and parking for 50 cars. The task was to prepare designs and administer the contract for a 3-bedrom chalet to be constructed substantially of local building materials and this was to serve as the Client’s residence. In the course of construction, the Client identified a business opportunity and expanded the scope of the project. The project has since seen several phases of expansion to offer various facilities to Guests. Our response to the assignment was to create an environment that echoed the calmness of the river by allowing the facilities to be as open as possible to encourage good views of the river and the undisturbed natural ecology of the islands. While doing this we were also mindful of issues of privacy and security. It is important to note that as an unfolding story, it is yet to be completely told, as the Client has intentions of undertaking the construction of a children’s playground with such equipment as a ferries wheels, merry-go- rounds, trains including aqua park facilities among others. AQUA SAFARI RESORT Location: Big Ada, Greater Accra Region Cost of Project: Approximately $5,200,000.00 to date Construction Duration: 2009 to date Until Aqua Safari Resort, members of our team had never been engaged in any project that required specific conditions to use local building materials. In addition, the challenges of undertaking such a task close to a river and the sea were of great concern to us. We carried out research into material availability, structural engineering competence of the materials, their durability and the aesthetic value offered. To fully appreciate how we could use the materials, we looked at the various elements of the building envelopes and more or less substituted them with local options. So that for instance, in place of columns we used proposed teak poles; for ceilings cane woven mats and so on. The nominated Contractor was also new to the use of local building materials. While we were all concerned about specialised labour for the construction, it became rather apparent that with very little supervision the craftsmen had developed the skills very quickly to execute the works. Arc. DANIEL KWADJO TEYE (AGIA) Bsc. Hons Architecture; PG. Dipl. Architecture; MBA Project Management Architect - Bricklane Development Group. 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 16 17
  10. 10. exhibition. AKOSOMBO RETREAT orthner orthner & associates + Dr Lesley Lokko
  11. 11. The Mikelle House is a natural residence, designed to blend seamlessly with the environment through the use of local materials, flowing landscape elements and organic spatial definitions. It is an intervention which though taking up a modest footprint, creates a bold statement in juxtaposition with its surrounding box shaped brothers and sisters. This statement is not intentional and merely illustrates the vast differences between pure local material construction and construction reliant on imported and borrowed materials and methods of construction. This project was only made possible because the client was of a similar mindset to the architect. The brief consisted of an open plan kitchen and living room with four bedroom spaces over two floors linked by a central staricase on a plot size of 37m by 16m. In designing the Mikelle House, like all other organic strucutres designed by the architect, the land dictated the initial processes. After generating suitable guidelines which were in harmony with the flow of the earth, the design ‘grew’ in stages with the landscaping until they both existed as a unifying whole. As the main construction material was earth blocks, walls were thicker at the base, tapering up, reinforced by a rigid wooden framework which also served the function of supporting the unique roof structure. The central curved staircase is composed of hardwood and wraps around an interior minigarden as it brings its inhabitants to the first floor. The Mikelle House was very well received, but ultimately was a dissapointment as the skills to execute the design were lacking in the system. However, the client has shown so much enthusiasm in the design that it is a strong indicator, to the architect at least, that our forgotten methods should no longer reside in the realms of theory alone and must be reevaluated and updated to coexist with modernity. THE MIKELLE HOUSE - EARTH RESIDENCE Location: Dome, Accra The vision of this design was to have a modest residential space that made maximum use of local renewable resources. The conception process involved the use of sweeping curves, arcs and circles as guidelines, as opposed to more standardized grid-like planning lines. Apart from the aesthetics benefit obtained from the resulting contrast, this was done to achieve a harmony with the earth as well as avoid sharp 90 degree corners and similar points of inflection that could possibly compromise the structural integrity of the tapering earthen walls which would require smooth junctions as much as possible. This was further strengthened by a rigid timber framework embedded within the walls, acting as structural reinforcement primarily for the first floor. Even without the load bearing capacity of the walls themselves, this framework is sufficient to hold up the dead weight of the superstructure. TENDAYI EJISU-AKROPONG Bsc. Architecture; PG. Dipl. Architecture Architectural Intern 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 20 21
  12. 12. BUILD WITH EARTH WORKSHOP IN GHANA A House for 5 people Location: Abetenim Arts Village (Juben), Ashanti Region, Ghana Cost of Project: Approximately 5000.00 EUR Construction Duration: 4 Months Project Blog: www.rammedeartharchitecture.wordpress.com Project Participants - Giulia Fortunato and a team of students from Italy. - NKA Foundation 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 22 23
  13. 13. GLOBAL MAMAS FAIR TRADE ZONE Project Partners - Global Mamas: www.globalmamas.org - Architecture Sans Frontières – UK (ASF-UK): www.asf-uk.org Project Partner - Sustain Adinkra: sustainadinkra.com Architecture Student Participants: Adjoa Akowuah; Lisanne de Beun; Kofi Ofosu-Ennin; Emily Wright Global Mamas is working in partnership with ASF-UK (Architecture Sans Frontiers UK) to realise their goal of creating a fair trade textile campus - a centre of production, training, and empowerment. The task is to embody Global Mamas’ ethos of woman’s empowerment through the design process, materiality and construction of the textile campus, ‘resourceful and innovative’ being the guiding concept. Global Mamas want to utilise participatory design principles to create an inclusive environment for staff and visitors. The Fair Trade Zone will incorporate all of the necessary elements for Global Mamas to continue to produce their highly demanded African textile products, create employment for 200 new women, while remaining sensitive to its environmental footprint and cultivating an atmosphere that fosters learning, healthy living and team work. The campus plan also allows room for expansion in textile production as well as other growing markets like skin care products. During the summer of 2013 a team of local and international architecture students worked with Global Mamas and ASF-UK to develop a concept proposal referencing other sustainable projects across Ghana. This presentation is a display of the participatory design process, it seeks to show that a key local resource is knowledge and that sustainable development should engage the people who will be the end users of these spaces. The final design incorporates local materials such as compressed earth blocks for the superstructure and bamboo for internal partitions. Sustainable systems such as solar for electric also biogas for producing fuel for the highly intensive batik process will be utilised and integrated into the scheme. Passive cooling strategies have been developed and the building’s position responds to the climatic conditions. ASF-UK are currently working with Global Mamas to refine the design and look for an appropriate site. 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 24 25
  14. 14. LABADI BEACH HOTEL, ACCRA Sustainable Materials in Hotel developments One of West Africa’s leading hotels, having suffered the ravages of time was completely refurbished and renewed in order to achieve five star rating. The renovation of 104 existing rooms and construction of a new block consisting of 60 new rooms, including presidential suites as well as the complete revamp of the Central facilities were required to be completed whilst maintaining a fully functional hotel. The new contemporary wing of executive rooms, complements the existing traditional form and materials and creates a classic modern Ghanaian aesthetic. orthner orthner & associates (AGIA) + Co-Arc International Architectural practice located in Accra bridging two cultures, Europe and Africa and bringing extensive design and construction experience from both continents to bear on every single project, large or small. 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 26 27
  15. 15. AKOSOMBO RETREAT Published in Phaidon Atlas of Contemporary World Architecture orthner orthner & associates & Dr. Lesley Lokko Situated on a long, graceful bend in the river, this house was designed to both complement its surroundings and respond sensitively to the hot, humid climate. Built from compressed, environmentally friendly laterite bricks, the cavity-wall construction protects the interior from the tropical sun and at the same time regulates humidity inside the building. A wooden shingle roof has weathered beautifully over time to reflect the natural palette of the surrounding colours and textures. Designed initially as a weekend retreat, the house has developed into a full-time residence. The clients are delighted with its ecologically-sensitive approach, the beauty and tranquillity of the site, and the architects’ traditional-yet-modern approach to tropical architecture. 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 28 29
  16. 16. KINKA HÉ LEISURE SETTING Location: Usshertown, Accra This project is part of a design thesis submitted to the Department of Architecture of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, in August 2014. The thesis, which investigated the rejuvenation of heritage urban waterfronts, proposes the creation of a milieu for urban tourism on reclaimed land in Accra’s historic city centre. In response to the maritime climate of the site, the walls of this street food joint are designed to be constructed with a rammed mixture of moistened red earth stabilized with Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) and waterproofed with a silicon-based admix. An umbrella roof of polycarbonate sheeting with two layers of bamboo strips raised over the concrete slab roof (using coated steel columns and beams) reduces heat gain in the earth cubicles while letting diffused sunlight filter down (without the heat) to an airy semi-outdoor sitting area. Vernacular architecture presents a palette of materials, methods of construction and multiple means of expression which have the added benefit of being tried and tested for over a century - by our own people, on our own soil. In my work as a designer, I often look to reinterpreting and referencing spatial configurations I see in existing indigenous settings so even if local materials are not used, the space itself forms the linking element between the idea of the design and the social (and other) dynamics of the site. When I do use local materials, they are juxtaposed with non-indigenous ones in a manner that creates a relationship similar to a painting on a canvas - the latter is the canvas, the former is the painting. For instance - heavy rammed red earth walls hiding retractable seating beneath the steel-framed roof of an outdoor performance space, or private galleries in earthen cubes inside a predominantly white concrete museum... I think in these times where cities are becoming placeless due to the adoption of one-size-fits-all solutions for urban problems, the Ghanaian architect needs to look to home-grown ideas to create a unique identity while improving the quality of life in our cities and countrysides. EDEM J. TAMAKLOE Bsc. Architecture; PG. Dipl. Architecture Architectural Intern 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 4.0 :Exchangetap ARC Ghana 30 31
  17. 17. thearchitectsproject.org Architects Registration Council Ghana The Architects' Project#tap Ministry of Water Resources, Works and Housing Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation

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