CRISIS > a condition of instability or danger, as in social, economic, environmental, political, or international affairs, leading to a decisive change

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

CS01__KHR Mobile AIDS Clinic [Sub-Sahara Africa]

In December 2002, KHR Architects [at the time, KHRAS Architects] out of Denmark won an international competition held by Architecture for Humanity to address the need for battling the AIDS epidemic in sub-saharan Africa through the use of mobile clinics. Designers who submitted entries were asked to make serious considerations for the ease of operational logistics of the actual mobile unit facility, economic feasibility for creating and deploying these units, and the units’ acceptance into indigenous communities.

KHR’s winning design, that was scheduled to be explored and developed further at the end of 2003 in part with the Africa Center for Health and Population Studies in South Africa, is a simple assembled frame inspired by the modularity of shipping containers. The design allows for a variety of delivery methods, depending on available transportation vehicles, as well as a variety of setups depending on the specific needs of teams and their selected region. Teams can determine if they have use for a one, two, or three-unit assembly based on their projected needs. The framing system allows for differentiating configurations as well as enclosed spaces beyond the frames for the extended medical and educational operations of the mobile unit. Local materials can be easily adapted into the setup and on-site design to form canopies or raised decks. Although the integration of local materials was intended to give the community acceptance and favor of the clinic, it is also intended by the designers that the simplicity of the frame and its boxed enclosures would signal shelter and safety to an indigenous observer before alarm.


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