Kenya Architecture

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According to, the Kenya remained a British colony until 1963; however the British, when they abandoned power, left behind a strong cultural and political-administrative tradition; this influence, after thirty years of independence, is still alive. In fact, as early as 1910, the administrators of the British East Africa Province of Kenya were charged with building cities “planned according to concepts that could facilitate future expansions, specifying the areas necessary for government, mercantile, hospital, religious and residential activities, in order to differentiate neighborhoods. for Europeans, Indians and Indians “. In 1929 Sir H. Baker built the Law Courts and Railway Headquarters in Nairobi and, in 1934-35,

In Nairobi, the result of the careful planning of the 1920s is visible in the separation of the downtown area from the hinterland with tree-lined avenues and parks that act as a filter and green border between the two areas. Since independence Nairobi has expanded in every direction.

Headquarters of the UNDP (United Nations Development Program) and its Habitat magazine, Nairobi is a point of attraction for urban planners, architects and environmental scholars, and is often used by international organizations for conferences, world and Pan-African congresses, to the point of making it necessary to build the large Kenyatta Conference Center, built in the early 1970s. by the German architect KE Nostvich. The shopping center boasts a high architectural level, maintained over the years and also due to the presence during the Thirties of well-known exponents of the modern movement, such as the German E. May and the English A. Connell, whose work influenced the quality of the constructions also of the following periods. Connell did a lot, until the end of the 1940s: among his works we should mention the offices for the Parliament, in collaboration with T. Dyer, and the Diamond Jubilee Hospital for the Aga Khan. Among his collaborators was R. Marshall, who worked for the Crown Court Offices and the Diamond Jubilee Hospital.

In 1965 Marshall founded the Dalgliesh Marshall Johnson studio, which has since been involved in numerous projects in Central and East Africa. Among their works from the sixties are the ETCO House, for a company exporting coffee, the Bruce House, seat of the British embassy, ​​and the International House. Towards the end of the 1960s, the studio designed the Bomas of Kenya arena in Lan’gata near Nairobi, for the Kenya Tourist Development Corporation, and the Safari Lodge a Voi, both circular in shape and covered in a cone shape. Also by the same authors are the Benedictine monastery and the French cultural center in Nairobi, as well as the prestigious Baobab and Nyali Beach Hotel in Mombasa (1987) and the contemporary renovation of the Norfolk Hotel in Nairobi.

The hotel architecture, given the ever increasing development of tourism, has assumed particular importance both on the coast and in the interior of the country (safari lodges Masai Mara and Tree Tops). Among the current works, the new headquarters of the United Kingdom embassy must be mentioned, the construction of which was entrusted, following a competition launched in 1989, to the Cullum and Nightingale studio.

Kenya Architecture

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