Konseguela business Area, Mali

  • by Mathieu Hardy
  • /
  • 2019-06-27 17:12:40
  • /
  • International
  • /
  • 8991 / EN
  • Building Type : Other commercial buildings
  • Construction Year : 2016
  • Delivery year : 2016
  • Address 1 - street : Konséguela , Sikasso 0000 KONSéGUELA, Other countries
  • Climate zone : [Aw] Tropical Wet & Dry with dry winter.

  • Net Floor Area : 579 m2
  • Construction/refurbishment cost : 60 000 €
  • Cost/m2 : 103.63 €/m2
  • Primary energy need :
    1 kWhpe/m2.year
    (Calculation method : Other )
Energy consumption
Economical buildingBuilding
< 50A
51 à 90B
91 à 150C
151 à 230D
231 à 330E
331 à 450F
> 450G
Energy-intensive building

Konseguela won the Low Carbon Award of the 2019 Green Solutions Awards at the nationel level + a mention for the international Low Carbon Award.

The Electrified Activity Zone (EAZ) is an innovative project developed by the Renewable Energy, Environment and Solidarities Group (GERES) to meet the energy needs of Very Small Enterprises (VSE) in rural Mali. In Konséguéla, this first EAZ brings to the inhabitants of the commune and surrounding villages new products and services that have been expensive or unavailable. The infrastructure allows to host up to 15 craft and service activities (modern bakery, carpentry workshop, oil mill, multi-service computer center, cold /freezing service, soap factory, nutritional flour manufacturing unit, community radio ...) and to welcome customers to the site. This initiative contributes to the economic and social development and stability of the rural territories of Mali; the model is currently reproduced in the regions of Sikasso, Ségou and Kayes ...

This project may be qualified as sustainable for the following reasons:
-The buildings are built according to the principles of the Nubian Vault Technical Concept promoted by the Nubian Vault Association (AVN) in Sahelian Africa for about twenty years. Raw earth and local stone are the materials used to make all the structures: underpainting structures in cyclopean concrete / masonry raised structures with adobe. Only certain outdoor spaces between buildings are embellished with light IPE + steel box covers, allowing to generate shaded and ventilated useful spaces at a lower cost.

-The architecture proposed by Al-Mizan consists of an arrangement of small simple buildings all designed on the basis of the same module and organized around outdoor spaces allowing a fluid circulation. The set generates many shady places at different times of the day while allowing good natural ventilation.

-Finally, the EAZ is entirely autonomous in terms of energy. An electric production center equipped with a field of 53 solar panels with a power of 12.5 KW / C provided the basic needs and can be relayed by a 20 KVA auxiliary generator powered by the Jatropha pure vegetable oil, agrofuel farmer produced locally since 2008. The supply of energy 100% renewable is provided 24/7 to companies of the EAZ.




See more details about this project


Data reliability


Photo credit

Camille Sanon / Mathieu Hardy / GERES / GERES - King fototala Massassy / GERES - Fertl Ink / AVN


    Groupe Énergies Renouvelables, Environnement et Solidarité (GERES)

    Gilles Michel / [email protected] / Bamako, Mali

Construction Manager

    Groupe Énergies Renouvelables, Environnement et Solidarité (GERES)

    Gilles Michel / [email protected] / Bamako, Mali



    Association la Voûte Nubienne (AVN)

    Thomas Granier / [email protected]

    Partenanaire technique / expertise technique et formation VN


    Al-Mizan - Architecture, development, Ecology in Sahel

    Mathieu Hardy / [email protected]

    Architectural design + project management assistance


    Association Malienne d’Éveil au Développement Durable (AMEDD)

    Execution partner

    Construction company

    Entreprise Karim Dembélé + artisans et apprentis VN

    Execution company

Contracting method

General Contractor

Owner approach of sustainability

Create a 100% renewable energy business zone that provides continuous electricity to very small local businesses. Use a sustainable constructive technique: the Nubian Vault Technical Concept, and contribute to its diffusion.

Architectural description

Until the end of the twentieth century, the constructive technique called "Nubian vault" was totally unknown in sub-Saharan Africa. It was not until the early 1980s that it was introduced by the NGO Development Workshop via the "Construction Without Wood" program, first in Niger, then in Mali and Burkina Faso. Its objective was to provide, through Habitat, a response to the problems of overconsumption of wood and environmental degradation in the Sahel region. In the late 1990s, the founders of AVN were interested in in turn to the issue of Habitat in Sahelian Africa, they naturally focused on this technique. Their interest was to explore the possibility of avoiding the wood resources traditionally used in construction, while avoiding some so-called "modern" materials such as sheet metal and cement deemed unsuitable for local realities. without formwork, a Nubian vault uses only widely available local materials, requiring neither cooking nor stabilization (compression, addition of hydraulic binders); This constructive technique was therefore an effective environmental solution. However, the "socio-economic development" dimension remained to be explored, and the question of its potential for adaptation and appropriation by the greatest number needed to be raised. It is this fundamental question that will lead AVN to adopt an uncompromising technical position that is sometimes misunderstood:
The choice of the simplification of the original Nubian vault and the systematization of the adopted model (no domes, standardized dimensions, etc.) to allow its wide dissemination. Indeed, compared to the traditional techniques of construction most widespread in this region of the world, the Nubian vault technique introduces, in most cases, a higher degree of technical complexity. The main challenge was therefore to make it widely accessible and therefore easily duplicable (ease of transmission, speed of learning, risk reduction), without excluding the possibility that, in the long term, a possibility of diversification and complexification could be achieved more or less spontaneous.Aside from the light steel structures used to shade some outdoor spaces, the ZAE of Konséguéla is entirely designed from the AVN-promoted Nubian Vault Technical Concept. The construction system therefore takes exactly the same standardized principles as those used by Sahelian populations to produce their habitats. Taking into account the need to limit the frequency of maintenance work on the one hand (excluding in fact the use of so-called "traditional" coatings), local resources available on the other (materials and know-how), facades The exterior of the earthen buildings was protected by sand-earth-bitumen coatings, finished with paint. The roofs are protected by an anti-erosive coating consisting of sand-earth-gravel-bitumen. Inside, all the layouts are rudimentary but functional, as set out in the specifications. The space segment of the operation consists of an arrangement of simple buildings, all designed on the basis of the same module, and organized around courtyards and passages allowing a gentle stroll inside the ZAE, while generating numerous shade spots at different times of the day and good natural ventilation.

If you had to do it again?

The power generation system has been overdimensioned.

Building users opinion

See GERES video

Energy consumption

  • 1,00 kWhpe/m2.year
  • 1,00 kWhpe/m2.year
  • Other

    The EAZ is entirely autonomous in terms of energy. An electric production center equipped with a field of 53 solar panels with a power of 12.5 KW / C provides the basic needs and can be relayed by a 20 KVA auxiliary generator powered by the Jatropha pure vegetable oil, agrofuel farmer produced locally since 2008. The supply of energy 100% renewable is provided 24/7 to companies of the EAZ.

Envelope performance

    The envelope consists of a massive adobe masonry (molded mud bricks and dried in the sun) + earth mortar, including the vaulted roof made without formwork, then loaded to form a roof terrace. The gabled walls (non-load bearing) are 40 cm thick, the load-bearing walls are 60 cm thick, and the roofs at their thinnest part are about 30 cm thick. The casing thus has a good thermal inertia, guaranteeing a better comfort of use compared to other current local constructive solutions (cement + sheet / cement + slab).


    • No heating system
    • No domestic hot water system
    • No cooling system
    • Natural ventilation
    • Solar photovoltaic
    • Other, specify
  • 100,00 %
  • The photovoltaic installation ensures the production of electricity of the zone of activities. A generator running on the pure vegetable oil of jatropha produced on the zone from seeds cultivated locally ensures the needs of peak, the "backup" in the event of breakdown on the installation, of insufficient sunshine or of non-electrical consumptions. planned. An electrical energy storage device is put in place to ensure continuity of services.

GHG emissions

  • 30,00 year(s)
  • 105,00 KgCO2 /m2
  • The calculations are taken from the reference document "Study on the Nubian Vault as a Construction Model - Final Report; p.40-46". The figure 105 KGCO2 / M2 corresponds to the phases "construction" and "building maintenance".

Life Cycle Analysis

    Not available

  • It can be estimated that more or less 85% of "Nubian vault" buildings are produced from sustainable materials (there are no eco-labels in Sahelian Africa): raw earth and stone.

    Over 30 years, it is estimated that the ZAE avoids > 960 tonnes CO2eq> 200 m3 of diesel

Water management

  • The EAZ is equipped with a borehole which feeds a water tower.

Indoor Air quality

    The buildings are made entirely of raw earth, material considered particularly eco friendly.

    Ventilation is exclusively natural.

Health & Comfort

    The strategy developed to optimize the comfort and health of users is the use of a suitable constructive solution called the Nubian Vault Technical Concept: sustainable and eco materials; massive carrying envelope; good inertia; natural ventilation.

    Not available

    Not available

    Not available

    Not available

    The characteristics of the envelope are at the origin of the good acoustic comfort of the buildings: massive carrying envelope

    Not available



    Local bricklighters / artisanal production mostly informal

    Structural work / Structure - Masonry - Facade

    The adobe is a mud brick molded and dried in the sun. The basic material is the building earth, whose main characteristics are: non-organic earth; fairly high clay content (25/30%) and good cohesion; worked in the plastic state (water content +/- 30%).

    The Nubian Vault Technical Concept uses two models of adobe:
    1 / A brick size 38 x 17 x 15 cm, used for walls, foothills and some arcades
    2 / A smaller brick size 25 x 15 x 5 cm, used for vaults and common arches

    Brick mortar is made with an earth mortar, generally of the same nature as that used for the production of adobes.

    The product has been very well accepted by all parties involved in the project. The project owner chose the VN Technical Concept based on this material; the execution company complied with the specifications and integrated VN masons and craftsmen into its teams; the users appreciated the architectural qualities of the buildings (aesthetics, comfort, functionality).

Construction and exploitation costs

  • 70 000,00
  • 5 280
  • 60 000

Urban environment

The ZAE Konséguéla is located in a rural area, at the entrance to the commune of Konséguéla. It is served by the main track that connects the town to the town of Koutiala (+/- 50 km).

Land plot area

4 400,00 m2

Built-up area

935,00 %

Green space

3 400,00

Parking spaces

Most users, from the municipality, are not motorized. Most access is on foot or by bike, to which are added punctual deliveries.

Building Environmental Quality

  • indoor air quality and health
  • comfort (visual, olfactive, thermal)
  • renewable energies
  • integration in the land
  • building process
  • products and materials

Reasons for participating in the competition(s)

​Energy: a self-sufficient activity zone thanks to a 100% sustainable energy mix: photovoltaic solar panels and a generator running on pure vegetable oil.

Hot climate: use of materials with a very low environmental impact / use of raw earth via solid adobe masonry , giving buildings a good inertia and a better comfort of use.

Building candidate in the category

Energy & Hot Climates

Energy & Hot Climates

Low Carbon

Low Carbon

Users' Choice

Users' Choice

Green Solutions Awards 2019 - Buildings

 Green Solutions Awards Winner
 Low Carbon Prize

Author of the page

  • Mathieu Hardy

    Architecte / expert


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    Green Solutions Awards 2019 - Buildings