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Following work done in Bujumbura, Burundi for The World Bank, SKB was invited to submit proposals for a new headquarters for the state bank. The building program included a branch bank, a public conference / civic center, office space for the bank's HQ employees and private residential condominiums on the top floors. The project would need to be built in 2 phases and had to incorporate passive and active green strategies to take advantage of the location near the equator. 

The design solution was built on SKB's knowledge of the logistical issues encountered when building in central Africa. The building utilized a conventional concrete frame with a site-cast concrete exoskeleton that served as lateral bracing system for the building in this high seismic zone. The skeleton allowed an all-glass facade with views in all directions instead of large shear walls at the corners.

The bank branch is located on the west side of the site by the public parking, and is one of several entrances to the main atrium that ties together the conference center, office blocks and residences. The upper floors are accessed through different elevator banks (red and green) that form a common vertical core. The atrium allows in filtered daylight and gathers waste heat for exhaust. The spandrel glass has embedded photovoltaic cells and the roof is covered with solar panels. The technology is basic enough to be durable and simple to maintain.




Base Building Architecture

Bujumbura, Burundi

180,000 sf

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