The Brand New French Embassy in Accra - through the eyes of its architect: Claude Guyon
Mr. Claude Guyon, architect of the new French Embassy building in Accra belongs to “Segond-Guyon Architectes”, a French architecture firm, created 8 years ago and based in the city of Lyon in France.
The firm is working on several national and international projects with an objective to create an environment of constant dialogue, where each one can work effectively, right from the initial concept design to completed construction.
Claude Guyon, DPLG Architect (French registered architect from Grenoble Architecture Institute), co-owner of the firm is in charge of the construction project for the new French embassy in Ghana.
In conversation with Mr. Guyon:
1. How did you become the architect for the French embassy? What got you interested in this project, what did you like about it?
In 2013, our architecture company won the tender for the construction of the new Embassy of France to Ghana, for the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. After the first phase of applications, our firm was chosen to compete with 4 other participants and the project we proposed, won the bid.
The main reason for our interest in this project is due to its location.
The site of the Residence of the French ambassador is remarkable in two ways:
Architecture of the residence
Botanical features of the park.
2. What are the main features of the new embassy?
We have, right from the beginning, taken into account, functional, environmental and architectural factors for this project. For us, a high quality environmental process cannot be separated from a “high quality architectural process”.
Our working approach which takes into account sustainable development, also prioritizes the convenience of building users, by providing, esthetic, temperature and acoustic ease and comfort in the future building.
Having considered the Ghanaian climate, and in a bid to maximize the benefits of natural resources, our concept is characterized, first of all, by a bioclimatic construction method.
This includes installation of high performance systems adapted to the local context.
3. What’s your view of relations between France and Ghana (for someone who is discovering this country)?
My knowledge of Ghana is limited to only certain parts of Accra and brief exchanges with the population.
I find Ghanaians very hospitable. (I like the word: Akwaaba)
During the more frequent meetings we have with our local Ghanaian partners from the DGB architecture firm (Mr. Brown and Mr. Agbodjan), we have had “constructive” discussions on the project, via the medium of our common language which is architecture.