Health Center in Tanzania/

Danielle Khoury Gregorio & Raquel Khoury Gregorio

Tanzania, United Republic of

Project Details



- / Tanzania, United Republic of


Educational Unbuilt Healthcare

Year (Design/Construction):

2021 / -

Area (Net/Gross):

- / 816 m2
Operational Carbon emissions

Operational Carbon emissions (B6) kgCO2e/m2/y:

Embodied Carbon emissions

Embodied Carbon emissions (A1-A3) kgCO2e/m2:

  • Adaptation to local climate through bioclimatic strategies.
  • Use of local sourced natural materials (rammed earth and wood).
  • Integration between green spaces and the building.
  • Use of solar energy to provide electricity to the complex and harvesting of rainwater for toilet flushing.

Project description as provided by the architects.

The project aims to provide a health and research center for a population of a small community in Tanzania. It was designed for the NGO Golden Aya.

The NGO requested a program that can be divided into three main zones: the public service, the educational and the employees accommodation area. 

For the distribution of the program two axes were established: a principal and a secondary one. Along the main axis are the spaces for the public service and the educational area, as well as the main entrance of the complex. Perpendicular to the main axis is the secondary axis. Along it are distributed spaces for the accommodation of employees, ensuring greater privacy for them.

The project has a modular structure with a total of six laminate buildings grouped two by two. Between each of them are located green areas, which in addition to providing collective spaces, allow better control of the complex temperature. Besides that, the green areas provide a rainwater buffer, purify the air and encourage biodiversity in the city. They also act as a sound barrier to the building, absorbing sound and thus providing a quieter place. Furthermore, being in a green environment has a positive effect on the well-being of people, as greenery offers relaxation and reduces stress.

Throughout the project execution, the local population will assume a protagonist role. Starting from the supply of building materials to the engineering and use of the labour force, hence strengthening the local economy. Once completed, the complex will not only offer quality health assistance but also a space that fosters educational activities.

Aiming environmental sustainability, the project makes the best of available natural resources: The rain water is harvested and utilized in toilets. Sewage water is treated so it does not further pollute rivers and can eventually be reutilized. Solar energy is an alternative renewable energy used to provide electricity to the complex. Thermal comfort is done naturally by the dissipation of heat through cross ventilation.

The roof develops a fundamental role in guaranteeing thermal comfort to the building. It is through it that the greatest thermal load is transmitted. Its design was thought in order to achieve a good adaptation to the local climate. The roof has two layers: the outer layer shadows the inner layer and minimizes the heat absorption of it, avoiding the heating of the interior of the building. The heat accumulated between the two covers is removed by ventilation, through an upper opening. The efficiency of the roof also depends on its colour and material. It is made of metallic sandwich panels with white paint. Its white surface emits 80% of its absorbed heat, making it a more effective barrier against solar radiation. The material is also easy to maintain and resistant to the actions of fungi and insects of the region, in addition to being waterproof and durable. Furthermore, the roof´s eaves prevent direct sunlight from reaching the interior of the building during the hottest times of the day, while also protecting it from rains.

The main structure of the building’s roof is made of reforested wood, which during growth absorbs carbon dioxide and generates less residues during the construction phase. The material is long lasting and renewable. It also has positive effects on our health: it improves air quality by moderating humidity, provides feelings of warmth and comfort and can lower stress levels.

The building´s external walls are made of a rammed earth, which has strength and durability, a natural beauty, low maintenance, fire proofing and pest deterrence. The thermal mass of the rammed earth walls provides year-round thermal comfort, eliminating the need for summer air-conditioning or heating demand in winter. Moreover, the thickness and density of the walls reduces the noise transmission. Rammed earth is non-toxic, non-polluting and ‘breathes’. This creates safer, more people-friendly buildings. Additionally, the rammed earth structure is very low in embodied energy.

Team: Danielle Khoury Gregorio and Raquel Khoury Gregorio

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