Transforming the Langano Building in Addis Ababa
6 July 2023
Simple repairs to the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office’s office building roof led to further renovation work and improved the space for all users.
The FCDO’s Langano building makes a strong first impression and is one of the first buildings you see as you enter the compound.
At the start of 2020, FCDO Services was employed as part of a technical team to project manage essential repairs to the roof of the building, strengthen part of the perimeter security wall and make the building more resistant to seismic activity.
The refurbishment works covered a full rewiring of the electrical and fire alarm systems to make the building safer. The end result led to modernisations that improved the look and feel of the building too.
Resilience during COVID-19 and period of local civil conflict
Then the global pandemic hit in 2020. The challenge of shipping and storing building materials was immediate.
Added to this, in November 2021, the project was paused for six months due to local civil conflict and Addis Ababa’s British Embassy was partially closed. Access to the main routes to key ports became difficult and many staff returned to the UK.
Regular updates and multiple photographs were crucial so that materials could be delivered and designs updated.
Excellent collaboration and communication between members of FCDO’s Estates, Security and Network Directorate (ESND), FCDO staff at Post and FCDO Services helped the project get going again as soon as the green light was given to start work on site.
Accessible and compliant
The old section of perimeter wall at risk of collapse was replaced with a secure and stable structure, reducing the risk to staff and members of the public.
As the project progressed, it became evident that additional works were required and it was logical to include some refurbishments in addition to the essential repairs.
New carpets and glass partitioning, improved ceilings and staircases, replacement fire exit doors and new secure doors were incorporated into the project.
The result is a light and airy clutter-free space, with improved toilet access and a functioning lift.
The ambassador is looking forward to moving into the new space.
The original scope of the project was fairly bland in the context of ESND’s wider project portfolio, focussing on addressing longstanding maintenance and seismic non-compliance issues in the Langano Building. The value-add brought by the team has been evidenced on multiple levels throughout the project, none more so than the Langano Building itself. It now looks like a brand new office – without going beyond the maintenance and addressing seismic non-compliance scope.”
Project Director for the FCDO’s Estates, Security and Network Directorate (ESND)