Notes from Accra: Part 2

Notes from Accra Part 2

Our journey continued with visits to Tessano ‘East’ which had a few remnants of the original site and service planned estate, best exemplified by the police station and a few administrative blocks, which often defined the colonial housing plan layout. A visit to the University of Ghana, at Legon followed. Designed in the late 1940s by Harrison Barnes and Hubbard, the leafy campus sits upon on a hill, high above Central Accra. The campus architecture has a curious oriental aesthetic which defines the its identity, with a number of significant buildings including the Balme Library and the Main Hall. In the African Studies department we joined our British Academy project associate, Dr Irene Appeaning Addo, for a very productive meeting.

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Tisano East Police Quarters

 

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The Grand Hall and Tower at Legon University, Accra

A trip to the Korle Gonno Housing Estate followed, using then new drained highway over the Korle Bu inlet and past the University of Ghana Hospital. The Korle Gonno Estate demonstrated a very early example of decant housing as from conversations with an older resident of the estate it was found out that many of the original residents had been moved from the Jamestown area of Accra to Korle Gonnu, a few miles down the coast. The estate was more intact than Tessano, with a number of the original buildings still evident.

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Korle Gono Housing Estate: regulated street patterns and services

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Korle-Gono Model, c.1920? Photograph held in the National Archives, Kew, UK.

A walk around the “Ringway” estate ,where we resided took us to the “Osu” layout and a road which had a pair of suspected James Cubitt-designed residences . A second visit just before departure from Accra confirmed this, although their external facades had been significantly altered. The pair of residences are now in use by the diplomatic corps.

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