Location: Oromia, Ethiopia
Architects: LAVA (LABORATORY FOR VISIONARY ARCHITECTURE)
Partners: JDAW Battle McCarthy
Client: Oromia bank
Status: competition entry, 2013
LAVA’s concept for the Oromia Bank Tower creates an environmentally responsive icon, inspired by the local cultural identity and uses nature’s fluid geometry to be both efficient and beautiful. The façade design references waterfalls, the fine texture of local woven baskets, whilst the rich colours of opals highlight the significance of this national institution.
High-tech methodology combined with local construction and delivery techniques create a sophisticated tower borne out of a strong sense of place. Simply organised, the tower consists of an iconic main banking hall on the ground floor with 20 levels of office space above. More with less has been achieved by the innovative integration of structure and environmental control systems. A façade of external fins controls solar gain and reflects light deep into the floor space, saving energy.
The tower’s upper levels step back to give way to a spectacular rooftop cafe, complete with a solar harvesting open-air roof canopy. Optimised site boundaries, maximised plot coverage, adaptability for future proofing and efficient floor plate dimensions all combine to create a tower that is at once iconic, efficient and forecasts a strong future direction for the city.