An analysis of monumentality in Kampala’s historical hilltop buildings: a case of Namirembe Cathedral.
Olwo, Mark Andrew
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The current wave of architecture in the country is more concerned with addressing the challenge of space, almost all the important contemporary grand buildings within the city currently are simply known for either their height or the large space they envelope. It is important for the buildings to meet their intended function and to be effective in space utilization but as well equally important for these buildings to cast a memory in the minds of the users. In the past monumentality as a language of architecture was used to create a series of experiences and shade memories of the past to the people and as well act a tool to unite the people and furthermore build their sense of identity, it does not mean that there is any lack of formal architectural examples, pretending to serve this purpose; but the so-called monumental buildings of recent times, with rare exceptions, are simply empty shells as expressed by Giebion (1943) and he goes ahead to suggest that they in no way represent the spirit or the collective feeling of modern times. Sites for proper monumental buildings must be planned. The existing monumental buildings thus has to be preserved along with their context to maintain their integrity. This possible once re-planning is undertaken to restore the hierarchy authenticity and integrity of these buildings. Monumental buildings will then be able to stand in space, for, like trees or plants, monumental buildings cannot be crowded in upon any odd lot in any district. Only when this space is achieved can the new urban centers come to life.