Location Various locations across Africa

Status In production


Squire and Partners were approached by Computer Aid International to design a series of mobile units providing internet connectivity to communities without mains electricity.  The unit currently used in eleven locations across Africa is based on a recycled shipping container with solar panels on the roof, containing refurbished computers donated from the UK.  The practice was asked to design a more cost efficient, practical and enjoyable environment for the users.


Zubabox (translates as Sun Box) is based on a simple modular system which can operate individually or as part of a group.  Maximising the possible amount of openings – working within the limits of structural integrity – increases cross ventilation and natural light, and creates a shaded deck which expands the usable area and encourages integration with the existing community.  A larger roof size allows for an increased number of solar panels.


Internally, a skin of plywood softens the working space and can be easily personalised by the users.  Computer stations are relocated from the perimeter into a central bench, creating a more social and inclusive atmosphere.  Areas have been designed specifically for potential sponsors of the programme alongside corporate social responsibility commitments, a key part of Zubabox’s future.


Client Computer Aid International

Lighting Consultant Atrium

Services Hoare Lea

Structure AKT II