About NamanaBe "Friendship" Hall
NamanaBe "Friendship" Hall—nestled in the heart of one of the most beautiful rainforests in southeastern Madagascar—is a five-story, 15,000-square-foot multipurpose building.
It serves as a combined research facility, residence hall, and conference center for students and scientists. More »
The Hall was built with locally sourced granite, brick, and concrete, and offers many energy-saving features, such as a habitable planted roof and systems for greywater recycling, solar hot water, natural cooling, and enhanced daylighting.
Rooms designated as sleeping areas have non-load-bearing walls to allow future flexibility in reconfiguring the building to meet changing needs.
The rooms are situated around a central area, similar to dwellings in local villages, to encourage socializing and the exchange of knowledge. The building also features several verandas, affording residents additional opportunities to socialize and commune with nature.
A Model for Green Design
NamanaBe Hall was constructed without the removal of any vegetation or significant modification of the existing site, thus upholding Centre ValBio’s mission of encouraging environmental conservation and preserving biodiversity.
Featuring an innovative wedge shape that fits neatly into its delicate rainforest surroundings, NamanaBe Hall blends seamlessly with the topography and nearby buildings, courtyard, and road.
Total Immersion in Nature
The Centre ValBio campus is in close proximity to Ranomafana National Park, and an entry walk serves as a bridge from the road to the upper tier of NamanaBe Hall, drawing visitors physically into the building and onto a veranda that overlooks Ranomafana's lush rainforestan ideal platform for nature observation.
Why "NamanaBe Hall?" The benefactors to NamanaBe Hall visited Ranomafana three times and were struck by the genuine relationship between Pat Wright and her Malagasy staff and the nearby villagers. Instead of naming the new building after themselves, which occurs frequently in the US, the couple decided to give the building a Malagasy name, paying tribute to the richness of its people, and emphasizing the "Big Friendship" between Stony Brook University, Professor Patricia Wright, and the people of Ranomafana (and all of Madagascar).