The Dakar Arena which is located in Senegal is a sports hall with a 15.000 visitor capacity and it offers a relationship with the city by implementing an urban plaza as a meeting point and an event space for inhabitants. Sports hall is conceived as a material culture which derives from the local tradition’s values and norms. For that reason, during the design process particularities of the context are highly considered. Following a deep analysis of the elements that form the regional identity, use of colors, motifs and patterns revealed themselves as crucial features of urban life. All aspects of African culture, including fashion, handicraft, work of art and traditional local dwellings have references to these elements. Above all, the local context is characterized by colorful salt fields and salt paintings and it inspires the design. It is easily recognizable in the plan view through the arrangement of central event space and surrounding circular circulation space and the exterior podium. On the other hand, different colors and patterns are visible in the design of the elevation. The selected colors come from the flag of Senegal and they follow a rhythm while functioning as a sunshade. That particular shape of the sunshade is selected due to the leaf shape of the greenery which is present in the context. These sunshades are used in order to create stratification in the plan. They mark the border between the exterior podium and internal circulation of the spectators. Foyer back wall is characterized by a white clean surface. It is interrupted only by the hidden service doors and hall entrances. Reflections of the colorful leaves on the facade shine upon the white walls of the main circulation space, giving color to the space and signaling the motion of the sun throughout the day. The mystic environment created by colorful sunshades in the circulation area also aims to refer to the European History. The tribunes are designed via the development of parabolic sections in order to present an equal angle of vision for each audience member. Although the building is designed mainly for sports activities, such as basketball, tennis, boxing, etc., it can also host such cultural activities as concerts and congresses. It meets all the design criteria put forth by FIBA (International Basketball Federation). Furthermore, it follows universal design principles so that the disabled, the elderly, and families with children can easily access and circulate throughout the building.
Founded in 2003 by Kerem Yazgan and Begüm Yazgan, both PhD. Architects, Yazgan Design Architecture Inc. is an architectural, interior, landscape and graphic design and construction firm based in Ankara, Turkey. The company has the capacity to create projects of different programs and scales that cover conceptual, design development and construction phases. Mixed-use buildings, retail, hotel, residential, office, educational buildings, hospitals, cultural centers, airports, and sport complexes are some of the building typologies that comprise the company portfolio. Yazgan Design Architecture also achieves interior and landscape design construction works alongside its project repertoire.