OTJOZONDJUPA REGIONAL COUNCIL
Cnr. Hospital Road and Industria Street, Otjiwarongo
The new head office building for the Otjozondjupa Regional Council is located in Otjiwarongo (Otjiherero: a pleasant place where fat cattle graze). The town serves as the biggest business centre in the region and has a neat and peaceful quality environment. The site for the phased development of the Regional Office Park is located away from the main road in a quiet suburban street.
Following careful review of the site, the new building was positioned with its longitudinal façade parallel to the street, with a slight angle relative to the existing building. The existing and new structures are linked by means of two bridges connecting ground floor and first floor levels.
The building has a strong unambiguous horizontal appearance, complimented with a colourful cylindrical form, which mimics the shape of a calabash. The inspiration to house the council chambers came from the ‘Ondjupa’, a Herero vernacular name thatdescribes a naturally groomed vessel often polished with red clay and used for brewing Omaere. The vibrant façade, further inspired by the bright dresses of the Herero woman transforms throughout the course of the day, showcasing lively ribbons of light inside the building.
One enters the airy lobby from the street beneath a high volume canopy structure dividing the council chambers from the administrative component. The spatial layout resulted in a double volume circulation corridor on the southern side of the building underlining the lightness of the façade design. The southern side of the building translates an almost translucent quality, filtered through a line of existing trees, while the northern façade depicts elements from the existing building, resulting in elongated horizontal framed windows.
The relationships of the design elements are all fused together into a whole, resulting into a dynamic, yet sophisticated composition that encourages the eye to explore.