Designer/artist: Redline cargo drone network, Afrotech-EPFL, ETH, Norman Foster Foundation
Year: 2016 – 2020
Description: A series of Droneports across Africa aimed at supporting the delivery of urgent supplies to remote areas on a massive scale. These cargo drone routes address the lack of roads in the region and offer an ‘infrastructural leap’ - just as mobile phones dispensed with landlines, cargo drones can transcend geographical barriers such as mountains, lakes and unnavigatable rivers without the need for large-scale infrastructure. The Droneport offers a new typology for a building, comparable to the petrol station. The Droneport is imagined as a kit-of-parts where only the basic framework and brick-press machinery is delivered to site, and the raw materials are sourced locally.
About the designer: Foster+Partners have experience in building airports, as well as in lunar building studies conducted in association with the European Space Agency. Afrotech is a future Africa initiative, based at Ecole polytechnique federale de Laussane (EPFL) whose objective is to help pioneer advanced technologies in Africa on a massive scale.
Image credit: Droneport Africa, as seen at fosterandpartners.com