Blaise Pascal High School Gymnasium in Abidjan
Koffi & Diabaté Architects
is a perfect combination of meeting the needs of the students and attention to sustainability in this particular climatic belt in the world.
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The 3,822 square metre Blaise Pascal High School Gymnasium , perfect for the 1,500 high school students to play sports, was built entirely from bare concrete, with contemporary geometric lines and is a gentle fit on the slope of the school site. One of these – the red sheet metal skin – stands out in particular. It makes sense in this hot and humid tropical climate because it is perforated, bringing natural ventilation and light throughout the whole facility and at the same time eliminating the need for air-conditioning.
This bioclimatic decision softens the bold materiality of this imposing volume and paves the way for a sensation of comfort, at the same time underscoring the connection between interior and exterior.
Functionality and atmosphere
Upstairs, the steel structure and its cladding acting as external Venetian blinds, accommodate bleachers with a capacity of 200 spectators and opens to a sports platform of 1000 square meters offering an exceptional place for various events that animate the Secondary School.
The indoor climbing wall is the first in western Africa, 36 metres wide and 9 metres high. The sports equipment is as discreet as possible and can be moved for greater flexibility in the use of spaces.
The Blaise Pascal High School Gymnasium won the award for the best sports building built at the 2018 World Architecture Festival. The jury recognised it as “an exemplary, ethical and beautifully realised project, perfectly balancing tectonic and environmental design with astonishingly mature spatial and formal control.”
We did this.
CIV – Abidjan
François Xavier Gebré