Midwifery School, Havé, Ghana

Midwifery School

The midwifery house is a non-profit project, showcasing architecture as an act of social responsibility. It is a place where German and Ghanaian midwives and doctors live, learn, teach and work. Since 2015, about 50 students worked on the design and construction of this midwifery school which includes a residence. The local school for craftsmen "Havé Tech" were also involved. Construction was completed in 2017.

The project has a number of design team members: RWTH University, Aachen; Peter Behrens School of Architecture, PBSA College Dusseldorf; Georgia Institute Of Technology, STO Summer School and also Transsolar. Transsolar is experienced with passive strategies that work reliably to provide comfort in the warm and humid climates that exist in West Africa. Furthermore, Transsolar gladly shares this knowledge.

Allowing air movement is a suitable strategy that gives relief from heat and humidity. Therefore, the buildings are two-stories high and furnished with generous ventilation openings. The main wind direction in Havé is north-south. Therefore, it was important to arrange the buildings east -west, with a courtyard ventilated by the wind. Wind flow is especially important at night, when the cooler air can be used flush heat from the thermal mass, Mudbricks, made in-house, bricks from a local company, and some concrete make up the thermal mass in this building.

The intense sunlight is another parameter that was dealt with through thoughtful design. To protect the rooms from overheating, large cantilevered roofs were built. These roofs have two layers and an air gap in between, so that air flows and dissipates the absorbed solar energy. This strategy and the shade provided by the roofs mean that solar gains for the rooms underneath are effectively reduced. Sunscreens on the facades are also provided.

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