Continuing on the work of pioneers like Hassan Fathy and Abdel Wahed El Wakil on critical Egyptian regionalism within the North African Country, Sasaki associates in collaboration with a consortium of firms embarked on a fulfilling mission to provide New Cairo with an institution of higher learning. The American University is reminiscent of quaint Arabic architecture, with lattices, natural stone and an etiquette that begins to perhaps explain the idea of contemporary values etched in ritualized ways of character and building.
From the Architect:
Over the past several decades, AUC has been a pioneer in providing high quality business education in the Middle East. In 2009, the university established the first School of Business in the region, building on its success as the regional leader in business education and research. AUC's School of Business was established to educate leaders who make a difference in the world by developing the capacity to build value and create prosperity in Egypt, the Arab Region and around the world.
Sasaki was retained initially to provide master planning, programming and concept design services for the entire AUC campus. This was followed by design services for major components of the campus which were focused on learning and educational delivery facilities. One of the most significant buildings was the new Business School facility.
The School of Business is housed in the new Abdul Latif Jameel Hall on the new AUC campus. The facility houses an enrollment of 1,200 undergraduate and 300 graduate students within the school's departments of Management, Economics, Journalism and Communications. The 3-story building occupies a total area of 195,000 square feet including classrooms, teaching laboratories, conference rooms, faculty offices and multi-purpose spaces. The building complex includes a series of interior courtyards which evoke the traditional architecture of Cairo and the facility occupies a major presence on the central Academic Mall of the new University.
Particularly noteworthy are the research centers within the School, including the Business, Economics and Communication Center, the Kamal Adham Center for Journalism Training and Research, the Citadel Capital Financial Services Center, the El Khazendar Business Research and Case Center and the Management Center. The Department of Management is the only program of its kind in Egypt and North Africa and one of only 85 business schools outside the United States whose business, accounting and MBA programs are accredited by the AACSB International.
In 1984, His Highness the Aga Khan announced his decision to finance the creation of a park for the citizens of the Egyptian capital. The only central location that was of suitable scale was the derelict Darassa site, a 30-hectare (74-acre) mound of rubble that had been a debris dump for 500 y...