• In Africa: Architecture Society of China_Part I

For many on the continent, the term ‘made in China’ strikes a raw nerve to the extent of dismissal and irrational repulsion. Yet we have seen a myriad of genuine and ingenious products from their automotive industry to handheld gadgets in our pockets. And it does not stop there. For decades, the Chinese government has aid-funded and sometimes delivered the construction of various dignified public buildings and infrastructure across the region. From stadiums and theatres to factories and presidential palaces, the influence of Sino-African relations has morphed its rural and rough terrain into a thriving urban landscape.

The earliest record involving China with Africa was in the 14th Century with the Ming Dynasty voyages across the coast of Somalia to the Mozambique Channel, and since then the hand of time has pointed towards a greater future. However, China’s footprint on the African continent is increasingly becoming bigger and bolder, bringing a backlash by politicians and leaders in several African states. They have cited shoddy construction and lack of respect for local labour as the problems of awarding large building contracts to Chinese companies. These ‘growing pains’ are isolated incidents nonetheless that arguably depicts a sibling relationship; both relying heavily on each other for development and resources despite the tussles.

All in all, the generations to come will admire the legacy left standing. Below is a chronological ensemble of projects listed by the Architecture Society of China.

1973 Sudan Friendship Hall
Architect (Studio): Shanghai Xian Dai Architectural Design (Group) Co. Ltd.

Location: Khartoum, the capital city of Sudan.

1976 National Stadium for the Islamic Republic of Mauritania
Architect (Studio): Shanghai Xian Dai Architectural Design (Group) Co. Ltd.

Location: Nouakchott, Mauritania

1981 Dormitory of Kenya’s Moi International Sports Center Gymnasium
Architect (Studio): China Southwest Architectural Design and Research Institute Corp. Ltd.

Location: Nairobi, Kenya

1982 Cotonou Sports Complex in Benin
Architect (Studio): China Ippr International Engineering Corp. Ltd.

Location: Benin

1983 Cairo International Convention & Exhibition Centre
Architect (Studio): Shanghai Xian Dai Architectural Design (Group) Co. Ltd.

Location: Cairo, Egypt

 

1985 Kenya’s Moi International Sports Center Gymnasium
Architect (Studio): China Southwest Architectural Design and Research Institute Corp. Ltd.

Location: Kasarani, Nairobi

1985 Kenya’s Moi International Sports Center Stadium
Architect (Studio): China Southwest Architectural Design and Research Institute Corp. Ltd.

Location: Kasarani, Nairobi

1988 Zaire Stade des Martyrs Stadium
Architect (Studio): China Southwest Architectural Design and Research Institute Corp. Ltd.

Location: Democratic Republic of Congo

1990 Moi International Sports Center Natatorium in Kenya
Architect (Studio): China Southwest Architectural Design and Research Institute Corp. Ltd.

Location: Nairobi, Kenya

1996 Presidential Palace of the Islamic Republic of Mauritania
Architect (Studio): Shanghai Xian Dai Architectural Design (Group) Co. Ltd.

Location: Mauritania

1996 Tananarive Indoor Stadium in Madagascar
Architect (Studio): Beijing Institute of Architectural Design

Location: Madagascar

1996 Levy Mwanawasa Sports Stadium in Ndola, Zambia
Architect (Studio): Beijing Institute of Architectural Design

Location: Ndola, Zambia

 

 

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