ISPA Conference & Expo
ISPA Conference & Expo
ISPA Conference & Expo

Sport

Breaking boundaries

Two decades on from the genocide that ripped Rwanda apart, a unique stadium project is aiming to bring people together. Matthew Campelli and Kim Megson report


Just over 20 years ago, an estimated 800,000 Rwandans were killed during Africa’s largest genocide in modern times. Between April and July 1994, hundreds of thousands of Tutsis were murdered by members of the rival Hutu community, in a devastating campaign of violence.

On top of the mass killing, around two million Rwandans were displaced, and the nation has found itself in a period of recovery ever since.

Of all the things in the world to help heal the divisions, cricket has stepped up, and now forms the basis of an inspiring sport development project which is taking place in the country.

Former British Army officer and businessman Christopher Shale, who had worked on social action projects in the African nation for several years, saw first hand the power of cricket in reconciling the different ethnic groups living in the surrounding areas, and decided that a purpose-built facility would develop the sport and increase the positive atmosphere.

Backed by his friend, the former UK prime minister David Cameron, Shale began working under the banner of the Rwanda Cricket Stadium Foundation (RCSF) on an idea for the facility, which would include an educational hub, as well as a much-needed centre for free HIV testing.

After Shale’s untimely death in 2011, his son Alby picked up the mantle, and now the project is close to completion.

“The inspiration for the project came from my father who loved Rwanda and saw how cricket was being used to build communities,” explains Alby Shale. “He went out to Rwanda because he was asked by David Cameron to set up a project with international development, and Rwanda was the country of choice as it was an area screaming out for assistance.”

Ahead of a May fundraising event – in which David Cameron will be present alongside England legends and RCSF patrons Michael Vaughan, David Gower and Clare Connor – Alby told CLAD that the foundation has £120,000 pledged through crowdfunding, and has a further £130,000 to raise to reach the £250,000 needed to complete the facility.

He reveals that the stadium is well under construction, with the pitch almost ready. If all goes to plan with the fundraising, Shale has pencilled in an opening ceremony for October 2017.

THE STADIUM DESIGN
The RCSF has partnered with Cambridge (UK)-based architecture studio Light Earth Designs to design the stadium, which will be made using local materials and land-use technologies intended to catalyse sustainable building practices.

“The project is innovative both from the point of view of sport and architecture,” says Light Earth Designs founding partner Michael Ramage. “The idea of bringing cricket at an international level to Rwanda is very important for the development of the sport in the country, and will allow for fixtures that generate a lot of interest inside and outside Rwanda.

“Architecturally, it will be a building that’s very much of Rwanda built by Rwandans for Rwandans. It will be something the entire country can take pride in. It grows out of an in-country interest in the design, rather than being something wacky and imposed from outside.

“The inspiration comes largely from two places: the green rolling hills of Rwanda and the trace of a bouncing cricket ball,” adds Ramage. “That has influenced the shape of the stadium’s three vaults and the pavilion as they come down a slope between the two cricket pitches.”

To avoid using unsustainable and expensive imported materials, the stadium’s main vaults will be constructed using recycled ceramic tiling and compressed earth blocks formed of 95 per cent soil and 5 per cent cement. These will be constructed into a largely self-supporting structure.

Many workers will be hired to complete the stadium and sharing transferable building skills with local people is a key focus of the project.

The facility will contain changing rooms, a press area, a bar and restaurant and a clubhouse offering free HIV testing for the local community. Spectator seating will extend outside, with green terraces built into the banks on either side of the building, overlooking two international-standard pitches.

SECOND PHASE
A second phase of development, taking place after the first building is constructed, will see a multi-purpose facility added – bringing dormitory accommodation, a swimming pool, a gymnasium and six tennis courts to the site.

The facility will be run on a not-for-profit basis, operating a ‘sport for all’ policy to encourage Rwandans of all ages, genders and backgrounds to have access to cricket. A training, coaching and support structure will also be introduced by the foundation and the government.

While the stadium will act as a home for the elite level game in Rwanda, Alby Shale stresses the facility’s importance to the wider community.

“We are creating an elite facility that checks the necessary International Cricket Council (ICC) boxes for hosting international matches, however it was designed to be a free access facility,” he explains.

“People outside of the cricket fraternity can benefit, and we have forged a partnership with the Surf Survivors Fund, which supports the survivors of genocide through community projects and reconciliation through sport.”

Working with charity Cricket Without Boundaries, RCSF will create a programme for 35,000 refugees from the Rwandan capital of Kigali to teach them cricket and HIV awareness. They’ll also invite cricketers to refugee camps to promote the sport as a “medium to solve social issues”.

Rwanda Cricket Stadium Foundation Pavilion Appeal

Fundraising calendar

As part of fundraising efforts by the Rwanda Cricket Stadium Foundation, a group of Rwandan cricket players made it their mission to find and photograph the ‘most beautiful and typically Rwandan locations to showcase cricket in Rwanda, as well as the country itself’ to create a charity calendar.

Photo's to showcase cricket in Rwanda
Photo's to showcase cricket in Rwanda
Fundraising calendar
Fundraising calendar
Fundraising calendar
Fundraising calendar
Our vision is to facilitate reconciliation, through the essential values of cricket
RCSF
Our vision is to facilitate reconciliation, through the essential values of cricket RCSF
Our vision is to facilitate reconciliation, through the essential values of cricket
RCSF
Our vision is to facilitate reconciliation, through the essential values of cricket RCSF
Our vision is to facilitate reconciliation, through the essential values of cricket
RCSF
Our vision is to facilitate reconciliation, through the essential values of cricket RCSF
Gallery
Click on an image to open the image gallery
company profile
Company profile: Myrtha Wellness
Myrtha Pools was founded in 1961 in Italy by the engineer Giorgio Colletto and through research and development has become leader in the swimming pool industry and has created an international brand.
Try cladmag for free!
Sign up with CLAD to receive our regular ezine, instant news alerts, free digital subscriptions to CLADweek, CLADmag and CLADbook and to request a free sample of the next issue of CLADmag.
sign up
features
The Pompidou Centre opened on 31 January 1977
Mike Davies with the original competition model of the Pompidou Centre from the 1970s
"The building concept was radical, the construction was radical and the design detail was unlike anything else seen in France"

As the Pompidou Centre turns 40, one of its designers looks back on a radical age

Many people today are searching for a sense of community
"Wellness real estate makes up about 1.5% of the total annual global construction market"

Research by the Global Wellness Institute valued wellness real estate at US$134bn in 2017 and growing. The research authors outline the implications

Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
To advertise in our catalogue gallery: call +44(0)1462 431385
features
The stadium is a multi purpose venue designed to host football matches and athletic meets. The building was modelled in two locations: Volos, Greece and Istanbul, Turkey
"The land was previously occupied by an oil refinery so we installed isolation layers before laying the pitch"

Azerbaijan is investing in sport, tourism and architecture to turn itself into a global destination. We take a look at the newly opened Baku Olympic Stadium

The museum is largely underground, with the roof forming a new public space
Konieczny studied at the Silesian University of Technology in Gliwice. He launched KWK Promes in 1999
"Many buildings nowadays look interesting, but when you analyse deeper, there’s nothing more than the form"

On designing the World Building of the Year

Long beams are angled to allow the maximum amount of natural light into the art galleries
Nicolas Moreau & Hiroko Kusunoki
"With big projects like this one, there’s always going to be controversy. Of course people are concerned"

The shock winners of the competition to design the Guggenheim Helsinki have kept a low profile – until now. Magali Robathan goes to Paris to meet them

features
Peter Zumthor studied in Basel, Switzerland and New York. He launched his practice in Haldenstein in 1979
"I like to take my time"

The Pritzker Prize-winner on those LACMA renderings

The i360 opened in August following 11 years of development
Julia Barfield and David Marks also designed the London Eye
"This is the first of these towers, but it might not be the last"

The challenges of designing Brighton's i360

cladkit product news
Eden project uses drones to spell out climate change warning
Magali Robathan
Almost 300 drones were used to signal an environmental message above the Eden Project’s biomes, during the UN Climate Change ...
Mather & Co and ITV unite to create Coronation Street Experience
Mather & Co has transformed the visitor centre into the ultimate haven for ardent Coronation Street viewers
Magali Robathan
Experience designers, Mather & Co, have orchestrated a remarkable collaboration with ITV to unveil the new Coronation Street Experience, a ...
Fabio Alemanno Design uses elegant semi-precious stones to create memorable spa experiences
Alemanno believes the stones are well-placed in the spa environment thanks to their capacity to positively support physical and mental health
Megan Whitby
Fabio Alemanno Design has expanded its collection with semi-precious stones to enhance spas, wellness facilities, hotels and private residences. The ...
cladkit product news
Jaffe Holden helps bring Academy Museum of Motion Pictures alive
Jaffe Holden provided architectural acoustics for the Academy Museum
Magali Robathan
Acoustical consulting firm Jaffe Holden provided architectural acoustics and audio/video design services for the recently opened Academy Museum of Motion ...
Codelocks develops new glass door smart lock
The new lock model allows facilities and building managers to create and manage access via an app or online portal
Megan Whitby
Codelocks has launched its first glass door smart lock to bring intelligent access control to modern spa, leisure, fitness and ...
Koto Design introduces wood-fired hot tub
Koto is known for crafting modular, energy-neutral cabins and homes
Katie Barnes
A striking wood-fired hot tub has been unveiled by Koto, an architecture and design studio which has a passion for ...
cladkit product news
Siminetti unveils iridescent decorative panelling range inspired by plants
The Clematis design
Megan Whitby
The Botanicals is Siminetti’s newest Mother of Pearl decorative panelling collection, inspired by the distinctive patterns found in botany and ...
Alberto Apostoli designs tech-forward Wellness Therapy furniture collection for Varaschin
The furniture collection draws on absolute geometries, pure lines, neutral colours and strong references to nature
Megan Whitby
Furniture manufacturer Varaschin has unveiled the new Wellness Therapy range, designed by Italian spa and wellness architect and designer Alberto ...
Alberto Apostoli and Newform collaborate to launch the A.Zeta showerhead
The showerhead offers two modes; rainfall or waterfall
Megan Whitby
Italian architect Alberto Apostoli has renewed his partnership with Newform – an Italian wellness company – and designed A.Zeta. A.Zeta ...
ISPA Conference & Expo
ISPA Conference & Expo