Awash bank awards architects

MH Engineering, Zeleke Belay and Studio Seven won the architectural design for the Hawassa, Balcha Abanefso (Ledeta), and Nefas Silk (Bulbula) site branch office buildings respectively. Awash International Bank (AIB) has awarded the above three with 50,000 birr and other participants with 5000 to 20,000 birr.

The jury said the Hawassa branch was designed in a flexible manner as the offices can be rearranged in many different ways.

The Ledeta building on the other hand is more simple. Its strong point is its easy access from the street. Its aesthetic value was debated, however.

The Bulbula building has simple composition, good climatic control and easy access, according to the jury. They said its parking area and emergency exits needed to be improved. They also noted that daylight did not reach the fifth and sixth floors.

Awash Insurance Company (AIC) has promised to insure the construction of all the branches.

The evaluation was conducted by the jury focusing on site usage, urban contact, entrances and exit, parking, climatic control, raw materials, emergency exits and other criteria.

The exact cost remains unknown but the bank has budgeted 100 million birr to start construction this fiscal year.

The jury which is composed of seven members has included Addis Ababa university lecturers in architecture and other professionals in construction field.  It was represented by Tesfamariam Teshome, an architect and senior partner at BET Architects and the jury evaluated 14 designs for the construction of the three buildings. Five are made for Hawassa and five for Ledeta branch. Bulbula branch has interested four of the designing companies.

Gereta consult, Yohannes Abay Consultants and Architecture, and Age consult were among the participants.

The buildings in Addis Ababa are designed to have ten floors and the Hawassa building will have six floors.

AIB has taken five floors from AIC at its head quarter because of shortage of offices but Extra offices of new branches will be rented.

The 2,800sqm plot of land of Ledeta and 1,850sqm in Hawassa is leased from the government and Bulbula’s 2,900sqm is bought from an individual.

AIB has many construction projects throughout the country. Currently it is constructing buildings in Shashemene, Negele, Adama (G+8), Ginbi (G+4) and Agaro (G+2). It has bought a G+4 building in Harar at a cost of 10 million birr and another building in Jimma. AIB has also applied for plots of land to some regional governments to construct other branch offices.

AIB in the previous fiscal year has made 505.5 million birr before tax and 360 million birr after tax. It employs a total of 3,000 individuals. The bank has currently 75 branches nation-wide. AIB is coming to the Asco area shortly.

This month AIB reached 884.5 million birr in paid capital adding over 150 million birr since the previous fiscal year and it is planning to achieve one billion birr by the end of the current fiscal year. Up to December 6th AIB has deposited 8.6 billion birr and loaned five billion birr. AIB has 600,000 saving accounts.