Renowned Senegalese architect Fatiya Diene Mazza, who is founder of the firm ID+EA, has been instrumental in refreshing the infrastructure of her nation. Her latest project is the Gare de Diamniadio, an extensive domed station complex linking the centre of Senegal’s capital city, Dakar, with the new Blaise Diagne International Airport. In no way a nice to have, the station reduces a journey that could take hours in a city plagued with traffic jams to a matter of 30 minutes via the Train Express Régional (TER). It also forms an integral part of the Plan Sénégal Émergent (PSE), an important government framework for the country’s economic and social recovery over the medium to long term. Sticking to a basic premise of modernist architecture, which is that form should ideally follow function, the building’s 75m-long connecting platform has undulating shapes that imitate the dynamic movement of a train. The main building, which can accommodate up to 9 150 passengers in a single day, is aerodynamic – even space age – in its design, which appears to represent Mazza’s heartfelt vision for her country.
SOURCE: DESIGN INDABA