House of the Czech Republic in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Gian Paolo Del Vecchio
Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid

Project idea

The project is based on the idea of creating a small Czech city inside Addis Ababa. The buildings are joined by representative and private gardens, where all activities related to the embassy will take place for the good of the local community and to promote the cultural exchange.

Project description

The complex occupies an empty site located in the Bole district and is arranged into four buildings with heights in between 1 to 4 levels; keeping its profile low and reflecting the residential scale of the surrounding streets.

The complex combines a variety of spaces, from private to public. The consular and visa offices have a direct exposure to the street making it more visible to the public.

The embassy office building is a simple structure, with offices on both sides of a central corridor, surrounded by a representative garden which also has a connection with the ambassador residence and the apartment building for the embassy staff. The representative garden is the central part of the project that connects all buildings and also acts as a polyvalent space where the events and the embassy activities will take place. The private spaces will be reserved for the ambassador and the embassy staff.

Technical information

Although from the surface it looks like a separate building complex, it’s actually joined by a basement that has a corridor that serves the technical rooms for MEP systems.
As part of the renewable design strategy, Geothermal energy will be used for the project due to the stable temperature of the site. The rainfall will be stored in a buried tank for later use in the complex.
Passive strategies had also been part of the design in order to reduce the energy demand. The façade is made out of high mass materials that will help the building to gain the necessary internal heat to reach the confort zone in the inside.

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