On September 15, 2015, British architect Norman Foster (Pritzker Prize winner in 1999) and Jonathan Ledgard, former journalist, director of Afrotech-EPFL and founder of Red Line, presented their Droneport project to the students of the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale in Lausanne. Their ambition: to build the smallest airport in the world to deliver essential goods (medication, medical equipment, commodities, basic equipment, etc) by drones in regions of Africa lacking practicable roads. With the support of ETH in Zurich, ODB engineers, LafargeHolcim research centre, and many other international players, the first Droneport should be build in Rwanda in 2017. A project commented and analyzed in the last special issue of AA, The Droneport Project, published in November 2016.
To understand the project’s goals, a lecture by Norman Foster and Jonathan Ledgard explains all its challenges.