15 Sep 2017 16:10pm
OSHAKATI - Namibian-based Deon Pretorius Architects were on Thursday given the nod for the architectural design of the Department of Wildlife Management and Eco-Tourism (DWME) at the University of Namibia (Unam) Katima Mulilo Campus.
According to a joint media release issued by the German Embassy in Namibia and Unam on Friday, the architect firm's design was chosen because it represents an excellent combination of an innovative concept to promote teaching and learning through the infrastructure, and a practical approach that takes into account economic and ecological aspects.
'To ensure that the architectural designs were evaluated without any bias, the designs had to be submitted anonymously without reference to the proposals,' the media release says.
The second prize went to Namibian-based Barnard Mutua Architects, while the third prize was awarded to Dennis Moss Partnership from Stellenbosch, South Africa.
The selection of the consultant followed a strict process of international competitive bidding, while one important part of the application included the submission of an architectural design for the extension of the Unam Campus in Katima Mulilo and the DWME.
According to the two institutions, the sustainable management of natural resources is one of the three focal areas of cooperation, while vocational training and higher education is a crosscutting issue addressed in all focal areas.
The German government funded the construction of this department, in efforts to ensure the sustainable development of natural resources and the tourism sector in Namibia.
The construction of new faculty buildings as well as the acquisition of adequate furnishings and equipment, and the development of innovative, practically relevant and integrated courses is being financed to a tune of about N.dollars 155 million.
The project supports the development of the DWME with a comprehensive approach, and also include the development of modern and innovative curricula.
It is expected to commence in the first half of 2018.
Deputy Minister of Economic Planning Lucia Iipumbu said the purpose of building the DWME at the campus in the Zambezi Region is to make it a 'green campus' that would establish environmentally sustainable practices in educational institutions.
'This will enable the trans-boundary conservation approach in order to promote migratory corridors for wildlife across international boundaries and to reduce human wildlife conflict,' she was quoted in the statement.
The project is expected to serve as a gateway for higher education and research in neighbouring countries, due to the importance of cooperation within the Kavango/Zambezi (KAZA) Transfontier Conservation Area to member countries.