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NO 10










An Organic Form
Shenzhen Bao Airport, China
Studio Fuksas
Umbrella Structure
King David the Builder International Airport,
Kutaisi, Georgia
Ben van Berkel/UNStudio
Incorporating Regional Identity
Terminal 2, Mumbai
Skidmore, Owings & Merill LLP


Subterranean School
Professional School Hanna
Cleaa Claudio Lucchin & architetti
associate, Bolzano, Italy


Search for Substance

A conversation between
William J R Curtis
and Rajnish Wattas





110 Intelligent Building Envelope

118 Innovative Product Design


Architecture+Design & Cera Awards 2014


Sustainability and Memory

By Niranjan Garde


A Metaphor of Function
By Pramod Beri
Inter-connected Spaces
Polymer Science & Engineering Lab, Pune
Beri Architects and Engineers Pvt Ltd,
Three-Winged Swastik
Emergency Management and Research
Institute (EMRI), Ahmedabad
Studio Eethetics, Ahmedabad




















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about the issue

OCTOBER 2014 ` 175

































Chhatrapati Shivaji
International Airport - Terminal
2, Mumbai (Architects:
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill
All drawings and visuals for the
projects and articles, unless
mentioned otherwise, are
courtesy the architects/authors.






ust as there was a phase when hospitals all over went through a change in design
concepts, similarly in the recent times one witnesses a radical transformation in
the approach to planning of airports. With the increase in air traffic, security
issues, technology advancements and the initiative to revitalise the core functionality,
these structures have developed a vocabulary of their own. Modern materials and
advanced structural configurations have no doubt given flexibility to the planners for
visualising larger space volumes and grid spans. Along with increased efficiency,
there is also the attempt of making the whole experience of being at the airport
more satiating both visually and physically. The interior treatments often tend to be
on the border of being lavish.
In this Issue we publish a few contemporary airports build in India and abroad and
which encapsulate an urban planning scale. The Shenzhen International airport in
China is an example it is the largest single building complex to be built till date in
Shenzhen. Elements of architecture whether it is lighting, texture, play of shadow
and such others they all are artistically oriented. The King David airport in Georgia
boasts of a pleasant setting amidst the landscape of the hilly terrain. Elegant, smart,
sleek are but some adjectives used to explain it. Whereas the new Terminal 2 of the
Shivaji International airport in Mumbai brings flavours of traditional and regional
architecture with a contemporary feel. The terminals roof is said to be one of the
largest in the world without an expansion joint. The entire airport building whether it
is the external faade or then the interiors resonates with the vitality of informal
structured design.
Institutional architecture is another significant component of the contents of this
Issue. Bigger complexes, addressing sustainability concerns, more elaborate in design,
probing material dynamics thats the pulse felt here. The institutions published are
clear headed design statements bringing forth the aesthetics of simplicity and the
positive relatedness that evolves with nature in exposing the rawness of materials.
Do not miss-out the product design section that explores meaningful innovative
design. And yes, the much awaited jury outcome for the Architecture+Design &
CERA Awards 2014 also finds itself cushioned in the pages that follow--.



Urban Scape Sky Lobby, The Palm Atlantis, Dubai

Photo credit: Harsh Varshneya

Any architectural project we do takes at least four or five years, so increasingly there is a discrepancy
between the acceleration of culture and the continuing slowness of architecture

Rem Koolhaas


Photo Credit: Uwe Walter / Autostadt

MobiVersum was designed by Berlin-based architect Juergen Mayer H of J MAYER H Architects as an exhibition
and experience area for young visitors at Autostadt, Wolfsburg, Germany. It is integrated as part of the overall context
of Autostadt People, Cars, and What Moves Them. The installation provides an active introduction to the subject of
sustainability in all its facets for children of all ages. The shape of the imaginative, playful structures of solid wood is
reminiscent of roots and tree trunks. The sculptures, which can be used and entered, structure diversified spatial zones
with different thematic emphases and inspire the childrens curiosity to discover and explore.

Project architect: Christoph Emenlauer; Project team: Gal Gaon, Simon Kassner, Jesko Malkolm Johnsson-Zahn, Marta Ramrez Iglesias, Alexandra Virlan;
Architect on site: Jablonka Sieber Architekten, Berlin


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

Fast Track Architecture

oettsch Partners (GP), an architectural

firm, has been hired by Hong Kongbased developer China Resources Land
Limited to design a project located in
Neighbourhood 2 of Shenzhens Qianhai
district. The project covers 6.18 hectares

and includes five commercial towers

totaling 450,000sq mthe firms largest
project till date in China. The overall
development totals 503,000sq m and
includes three office towers, a five-star
hotel tower, an apartment tower, a
shopping mall and retail stores. GP is
designing all of the towers as well as the
hotel and apartment podiums and their
affiliated program spaces. GP in collabora
tion with UK-based design firm Benoy,
is designing the shopping mall and
retail areas.
The overall design concept is one of a
unified complex composed of buildings
with related yet individual exterior
characteristics and facades. A metallic-

painted aluminum frame with consistent

spacing between verticals prioritises
internal planning flexibility for the office
towers. The spacing between horizontal
frame elements varies from a two-storey to
a four-storey rhythm in order to respond
more individually to each office buildings
height and proportions. The frames
vertical component is accentuated by
means of double fins; this character is
countered by an expression of double
horizontal fins on the hotel and apartment
towers that create a related yet different
appearance while affording flexibility for
views and natural ventilation.
For more information, visit:

below Glasgows Central Station and is

named after Alston St, the main
thoroughfare of Glasgows mysterious,
forgotten Grahamston Village that stood
at the crossroads of the main north-south

and east-west axes of Glasgow, and which

was built over in the late 1800s to create
the station.
The design of the restaurant integrates
the rich historic layers of the city while
adding contemporary elements, creating a
brand new state-of-the-art venue that is
innovative and highly atmospheric. The
design draws on the rugged history of the
station, along with the wider context of
Scotland to create a retreat that is full of
oblique references. The materials and
finishes have been chosen to bring
together the restaurants distinctive blend
of local cuisine and specialist gin selection.

rchitectural firm Jestico + Whiles

recently completed the new Alston
Bar & Beef restaurant for food and drink
group Glendola Leisure. The restaurant is
the first to open up under Glasgows
busiest railway station and boasts a
dramatic wall mural visible to passers-by.
The firm (responsible for the interior
design and the overall visual identity)
commissioned and worked closely with
Timorous Beasties on the wall mural to
add unconventional touches of Scotland to
the stairway art work.
This 80-seat restaurant occupies a set
of forgotten arches in the catacombs

he Regent hotel Porto

Montenegro designed
by ReardonSmith
Architects and
ReardonSmith Landscape
has been launched in Porto
Montenegro. Inspired by
the houses that grace the
regions Adriatic coastline, the buildings architecture also
responds to the classical manner of the grand palazzos of the
Italian lakes. While the hotels scale and style is imposing
amongst its smaller neighbours, the relationship with them is
also clear. All the buildings are clad in Montenegrin stone and
render and are topped with terracotta roof tiles; the arched
colonnade that wraps around the hotel is typical in the region


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

and provides shaded areas

in the summer months as
well as protection during
the rainy season.
Patrick Reardon,
executive chairman of
ReardonSmith Architects,
said, We are delighted to
see the opening of Regent Porto Montenegro, the newest
achievement in our seven years-to-date programme to
transform what was once a decommissioned naval base into
what it is today not only a spectacular yachting enclave but
also a thriving, working town. It has been particularly rewarding
since this is our first completed project involving both the
architecture and landscape teams at ReardonSmith.


he 2014 edition Towards 2050: Developing a Sino-Dutch

Approach for Sustainable Urbanisation was recently held in
Beijing. The event witnessed an intense Sino-Dutch cooperation in
the field of sustainable urban development. The goal of the
initiative was to explore how the Dutch integrated planning
approach can be adapted and implemented within the context of
the rapid urbanisation of Chinese metropolitan regions. To this
end, the event organised various programmes, such as Sino-Dutch
design projects, workshops, seminars and exchanges.
Initiated by the Creative Industry Fund NL, the theme this year
is Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) and Towards 2050 works
together with the Beijing Municipal Commission of Urban
Planning, Ministry of Housing, Urban and Rural Development and
Beijing Design Week, among others.
Ton Venhoeven, former Dutch chief government advisor on
Infrastructure and curator of Towards 2050, said, I am delighted

with the broad background and expertise of the Chinese and

Dutch participants. There are various specialists and generalists,
policy makers and designers, from both public and private
institutions. With professors and students they work together on
projects that contribute to smart, competitive, sustainable and
healthy urban regions. "


aha Hadid has been chosen to design a

new mathematics gallery at the
Science Museum, London. The 5 million
David and Claudia Harding Mathematics
Gallery will become a permanent addition
to the museum, as part of its planned 60
million redevelopment.
The gallery will present the tools and
ideas of the mathematicians who have
helped to shape the world from the turn of
the 17th century to the present. Zaha
Hadids practice has embodied this idea by

anchoring engineering and mathematical

thinking throughout their designs.
Zaha Hadid, who studied mathematics

at the American University in Beirut, said,

The design explores the many influences
of mathematics in our everyday lives,
transforming seemingly abstract
mathematical concepts into an exciting
interactive experience for visitors of
all ages.
The David and Claudia Harding
Mathematics Gallery will open in 2016 and
will be curated by David Rooney.
For further information, visit:


he World Architecture Festival (WAF) has announced the

shortlisted projects for the Wood Excellence Prize, which makes
it debut at this years WAF awards programme. Sponsored by the
American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC), the Wood Excellence
Prize is the first of its kind to feature on the festivals awards
programme with the only criterion that wood is an integral part of


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

the project. Over forty submissions were received for the award and
eight great timber projects will now be put forward for the final
judging in Singapore led by renowned architect, Matteo Thun.
The shortlisted projects, include The Tent by a21studio (Nha
Trang, Khanh Hoa, Vietnam); Pittwater House by Andrew Burges
Architects (Sydney, Australia); Earth Wind and Fire Atelier by Arcau
(Vannes, France); School 't Hofke by UArchitects (Eindhoven, The
Netherlands); Regional Terminal at Christchurch Airport by BVN
Donovan Hill (Christchurch, New Zealand); Salvaged Ring by
a21studio (Nha Trang, Khanh Hoa, Vietnam); Alex Monroe Studio
by DSDH (London, UK); and The Pinch by the Department of
Architecture, University of Hong Kong (Zhaotong, China).
Paul Finch, programme director, World Architecture Festival,
said: This was a great way to appreciate how a traditional'
material can be used to transform exteriors and interiors in new
and unexpected ways.

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Das gute Licht.

For a welcoming reception.

Trade news

hilips India recently created a LED lit Arch and

Shankh structure on the occasion of Ganesh Ustav.
This structure demonstrated the benefits as well as
aesthetic possibilities of LED lighting.
With more than 11,000 coloured LED lamps, the
structure is stood at 24ft height, 20ft width, a depth of
10ft the biggest techno artistic LED lit structure in India.
The unit is engineered with sound sensors and the shankh
lights up with the chant Ganpati Bappa Morya.
The entire unit consumes less than 6 units per hour.
The LED lighting used is 96% more energy efficient
when compared to the normal incandescent bulbs
which are normally used in pandaals during festive occasions.
Sumit Joshi, marketing head, Philips Lighting India, said, Through this
initiative, we are showcasing an innovative architecture that represents the
celebrations of Ganesh Chaturthi in an environment friendly manner and
demonstrates the possibilities offered by LED lighting in terms of energy
efficiency and cost effectiveness.

rvicon International has unveiled its first

concept showroom in Dwarka. The store
houses products and design themes made of
stone veneers. From beds to side tables, bars to
walls, all the products are done in stone
With the motto of fusing architectural
creativity with nature's legacy of stone, the
company highlighted the lifestyle and luxury
application of stone veneers.
Gaurav Jain, MD, Arvicon International,
said, While stone, in all its forms and textures,
is a delight when it comes to architecture and
design, it is that difficult to work with. The
sheer weight and the ineffectiveness of cost
makes most people rule out using stone work
on a regular basis. But here is the perfect thing
for them - stone veneers.


he second edition of the Architecture &

Design Summit 2014 was recently held at
ITC Sheraton, New Delhi. The summit was held
in five cities including New Delhi, where a one
day conference was held highlighting the
architectural and design innovations to shape the future cities of
India. It aimed to bring together key stakeholders to deliberate
on the current challenges through multiple focused panel
discussions. With the theme of Tradition and Modernity in
Contemporary Practice, the conference focused on 'C' level
executives leading the organisations from the fore front while
assessing the sectors course ahead and figuring out ways to
mitigate risks and future-proof the business profitability.
Participation of eminent personalities from the hospitality,
healthcare, social infrastructure, residential and commercial
space was seen at the event.
Speaking on the occasion, Deepak Lamba, president, Times
Conferences Limited BCCL said, After the phenomenal
success of the first edition of the Architecture and Design
Summit, we are elated to host the second edition of one of
Indias biggest Design summit- The Economic Times Architecture
& Design Summit 2014. The aim is to leverage the wealth of
experience, discuss research initiatives and discover the
opportunity in architecture and design implementation on a
larger scale. The summit is an endeavor to bring various
industry stakeholders together on a single platform and discuss
strategies and steps which will ensure that today's dream turns
into tomorrow's reality.
This conference brought forth Indian and global industry


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

barons and visionaries on one platform to share their

knowledge and experience of creating structures that align with
the needs of a progressive nation with era-defining designs.
The special address was given by Abhishek Somany, joint
managing director, Somany Ceramics. Other prominent leaders
present on the occasion, included Karan Grover, founder, Karan
Grover & Associates; Sunita Kohli, president K2 India and J B
Krishsagar, chief planner, Town & Country Planning
Organisation, Government Of India, Ministry of Urban
Development, among others.

The event was organised by Somany Ceramics in

collaboration with Economic Times. It was held in Ludhiana,
Lucknow, Chandigarh, Dehradun followed by the culmination
event in New Delhi.
For details, e-mail:

Tradition meets Emotion.

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Project Feature

An Organic Form
Project: Shenzhen Baoan International Airport, Shenzhen, Guangdong, China
Architects: Studio Fuksas


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN


ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4


he terminal the largest single public building to be

built till date in Shenzhen encompasses 63 contact
gates, with a further 15 remote gates and significant
retail space. It will increase the capacity of the airport by 58
percent, allowing the airport to handle up to 45 million
passengers per year.

The concept of the plan for Terminal- 3 of the airport evokes

the image of a manta ray, a fish that breathes and changes its
own shape, undergoes variations, turns into a bird to celebrate
the emotion and fantasy of a flight. The structure of T3 an
approximately 1.5km long tunnel seems to be modelled by
the wind and is reminiscent of the image of an organic-shaped





O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN


2. BAR











12. CIP
13. GTC


2 4

5 6









4. BAR
6. GTC


17 CIP







4. BAR
5. GTC





O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN



ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4



sculpture. The profile of the roofing is characterised by

variations in height alluding to the natural landscape.
The symbolic element of the plan is the internal and external
double skin honeycomb motif that wraps up the structure.
Through its double-layering, the skin allows natural light in,
thus creating light effects within the internal spaces. The
cladding is made of an alveolus-shaped metal and glass panels
of different sizes that can be partially opened.
The passengers accede to the terminal from the entrance
situated under the large T3 tail. The wide terminal bay is
characterised by white conical supporting columns rising up
to touch the roofing like the inside of a cathedral. On the
ground floor, the terminal square allows access to the
luggage, departure and arrival areas as well as coffee houses
and restaurants, offices and business facilities. The departures
hall houses the check-in desks, the airlines info-points and


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

several help- desks. The double and triple height spaces of

the departure hall establish a visual connection between the
internal levels and create a passage for natural light. After
checking in, the national and international passengers flows
spread out vertically for departures.
The concourse is the airports key-area and is made up of
three levels. Each level is dedicated to three independent
functions departures, arrivals and services. Its tubular
shape chases the idea of motion. The cross is the
intersection point where the three levels of the concourse are
vertically connected to create full-height voids, which allow
natural light to filter from the highest level down to the
waiting room set in the node on the ground floor.
The honeycomb motif is transferred and replicated in the
interior design. Shop boxes, facing one another, reproduce
the alveolus design on a larger scale and recur in different

articulations along the concourse. The interiors placed in

the internet-point, check-in, security-check, gates and
passport-check areas have a sober profile and a stainless
steel finish that reflects and multiplies the honeycomb motif
of the internal skin.
Sculpture-shaped objects and big stylised white trees have
been designed for air-conditioning all along the terminal and
the concourse, replicating the planning of amorphous forms
inspired by nature. This is also the case for the baggage-claim
and info-point islands. The design has been optimised to
make best use of natural ventilation and light. Photovoltaics
will meet the electricity demand of T3, making about 950
million electricity units each year.
The main building includes two-storey underground and
four layers above the ground (partial five storeys). The fourth
floor is the departure hall. The third floor is connected with
the domestic departing passengers channel and the centre of
it is the international joint inspection zone, luggage
collection/checkpoint and the office area located on both
sides. The domestic passage channel, luggage claim hall and
part of the office area are on the second floor. At the northeast part of the first floor is the international departure hall.
Its centre is used for the international joint inspection zone


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

and also the luggage claim hall. In front of the first floor
stand the CIP lounges. Between it and the main building
stands the outdoor courtyard.
Studio Fuksas are engaged on two further phases of the
airport extension, scheduled to complete in 2025 and
2035 respectively.
Photo credit: Archivio Fuksas

Client: Shenzhen Airport (Group) Co, Ltd
Architects: Studio Fuksas, Shenzhen/Rome/Paris
Design team: Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas
Interior design: Fuksas Designinternet-point, check-in island, securitycheck, gates, passport-check areas, shop box, baggage-claim islands, infopoint, ventilation trees, signage, commercial desk and washrooms
Developer: Shenzhen Planning Bureau; Shenzhen Airport (Group) Co, Ltd
Contractor: China State Construction Engineering Corporation, Beijing
Structures, faade and parametric design: Knippers Helbig Engineering
Architect of record: BIAD (Beijing Institute of Architectural Design)
Lighting consulting: Speirs & Major Associates
Cost of project: 734,000,000 Euros
Size: 5,381,955sq ft (approximately)
Year of completion: 2013 (Phase-1)

Airport Design

Umbrella Structure
Project: King David the Builder International Airport, Kutaisi, Georgia
Architects: Ben van Berkel/UNStudio, Amsterdam


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

he recently completed airport serves domestic and

international flights for use by tourists, national
politicians and international diplomats. The airport is
designed to become a central hub, with up to one million
travellers targeted in 2014-2015.
The design comprises the full airport development,
including a revision of the runway, the master plan for the
landscape and planned future development, thereof the
terminal building, offices, a meteorological station and the
air traffic control tower.

The architecture of the terminal refers to a gateway, in

which a clear structural layout creates an all-encompassing
and protective volume. Both the exterior corner detail, which
functions as a crossing-point and point of recognition, and
the so called umbrella structure within the terminal building
which operates as a roundabout for passenger flows operate
as the two main architectural details around which all of the
airport functions are organised.
The umbrella further guarantees views from the terminal
plaza to the apron and to the Caucasus on the horizon and


ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4



vice versa. The central point in the umbrella is an exterior

patio which is used for departing passengers. The transparent
space around this central area is designed to ensure that
flows of passengers are smooth and that departure and
arrival flows do not coincide.
The design organises the logistical processes, provides
optimal security and ensures that the traveller has
sufficient space to circulate comfortably. Serving as a lobby


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

to Georgia, the terminal in addition operates as a caf and art

gallery, displaying works by young Georgian artists and
thereby presenting a further identifier of contemporary
Georgian culture.
The 55m high Air Traffic Control Tower and its supporting
office/operational building is designed to complement the
design of the terminal. The towers strong appearance makes it
a beacon of the airport and surrounding area. The traffic


control cabin on the top level forms the focal point of the
tower, with a 360 degrees view on the surrounding landscape.
A spacious and comfortable interior ensures a workspace for
four to eight operators with optimal concentration. The exterior
of the tower is clad with a perforated skin on a concrete core
to use wind for ventilation purposes. LED light in-between the
skin and the core enhance the beacon effect of the tower at
dusk and dawn by changing colour whenever there is a
fluctuation in wind speed.
The design for the new airport incorporates numerous
sustainable elements. A large onsite underground source of
natural water provides the basis for the reduction of energy
consumption through concrete core activation and use for


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

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Client: United Airports of Georgia LLC (Master Plan and Terminal)
Sakaeronavigatsia Ltd (Air Traffic Control Tower, offices and meteorological building)
Architects: UNStudio, Amsterdam/Shanghai/Hong Kong
Project team: Ben van Berkel (Principal), Caroline Bos, Gerard Loozekoot with
Frans van Vuure and Filippo Lodi, Roman Kristesiashvili, Tina Kortmann, Wendy van
der Knijff, Kristoph Nowak,Machiel Wafelbakker, Gustav Fagerstrm, Thomas
Harms, Deepak Jawahar, Nils Saprovskis, Patrik Noome
Consultants: MTM kft (Structural), SMG-SISU kft (MEP), OR else (Landscape
Architect), Arup (Structural expertise & Sustainability), Arup Aviation (Airport
planning), Studio ARCI (Local architect)
Contractors: Paul Schuler und Irao Group Ltd (Concrete Works); RutinKft (Steel
Structure); Hess Timber GmbH & Co KG (Wood Structure); Permasteelisa Interiors Srl
(Facades & Terminal Interior Ceiling/Trusses); Paul Schuler und Irao Group Ltd
(Terminal Interior); Black Sea Group, Tbilisi (Landscape); Jzsef and Zsuzsa
Keresztly (Site Management)
Total floor area: 4,500sq m (Terminal), 1,800sq m (Control Tower & Offices)
Year of completion: 2013



O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4


sprinkler basins. The floors of both the terminal and the traffic
control tower utilise this water for maintaining a regulated
temperature in the two volumes. In the terminal building
cantilevered roofs provide sun-shading on south and south-west
zones. A hybrid low pressure ventilation system is integrated
into the terminals main structure and there is a grey water
collection system in the floor underneath the terminal building.
The project was designed and constructed in two years
with the airport already having begun operations by
September 2012. Both the design and construction saw the


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

involvement of numerous local and international companies,

with openness and knowledge sharing proving to be essential
to fulfilling the tight schedule. The steel structure of the
terminal, produced and shipped from Hungary recently won
a European Steel Prize award.
The design for the airport further incorporates the potential
for an expansion to double its size and capacity, should this
prove necessary in the future.
Photo credit: Nakanimamasakhlisi

Airport Designs

Incorporating Regional Identity

Project: Terminal 2 - Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai
Architects: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP

ocated in the heart of Indias financial capital, the new

integrated terminal building at Chhatrapati Shivaji
International Airport adds 4.4 million square feet of
space to accommodate 40 million passengers per year, nearly
twice as many as the building it replaces. By orchestrating the


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

complex web of passengers and planes into a design that feels

intuitive and responds to the regions rocketing growth, the new
Terminal 2 asserts the airports place as a pre-eminent gateway
to India and underscores the countrys status as an international
economic power.


The new terminal integrates international and domestic

passenger services under one roof, optimising terminal
operations and reducing passenger walking distances.
Inspired by the peacock, the four-storey terminal stacks a
grand head house or central processing podium, on top of

the highly adaptable and modular concourses below. Rather

than compartmentalising terminal functions, four concourses
radiate outwards from a central processing core and are
therefore easily reconfigured to swing between serving
domestic and international flights. Just as the terminal

ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4


celebrates a new global, high-tech identity for Mumbai, the

structure is imbued with responses to the local setting, history
and culture. Gracious curb side drop-off zones designed for
large parties of accompanying well-wishers accommodate
traditional Indian arrival and departure ceremonies. Regional
patterns and textures are subtly integrated into the terminals
architecture at all scales from the articulated coffered
treatment on the head house columns and roof surfaces to
the intricate jali window screens that filter dappled light into
the concourses.
The terminal demonstrates the potential for a modern
airport to view tradition anew. The project also makes a
significant positive contribution to the local fabric. By
integrating into the existing transportation fabric and by
furthering connectivity through the simultaneous development
of a new road network to service the airport, the terminal
helps knit together the historic heart of Mumbai to the south
with the citys burgeoning peripheries to the east and north.
A 50ft tall glass cable-stayed wallthe longest in the
worldopens to the soaring space of the check-in hall.
Once inside, the travellers enter a warm, light-filled
chamber, sheltered underneath a long-span roof supported
by an array of multi-storey columns. The monumental spaces
created beneath the 30 mushrooming columns call to mind


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

the airy pavilions and interior courtyards of traditional

regional architecture. Small disks of colourful glass recessed
within the canopys coffers speckle the hall below with light.
The constellation of colours makes reference to the peacock,
the national bird of India, and the symbol of the airport.
The site of the new terminal building was located in close
proximity to the existing terminal which had to remain fully
operational during the construction. This site requirement
inspired the elongated X-shaped plan of the terminal, which
could both mould around the existing structures and
incorporate modular designs to accommodate rapid and
phased construction. This innovative form also allows for the
consolidation of important passenger processing, baggage
handling and retail/dining functions at the centre of the
terminal. On each floor, radiating piers permit the shortest
possible walking distances from the centre of the terminal to
boarding areas, while also maximising the terminals
perimeter for aircraft gates.
All international and domestic passengers enter the
terminal head house on the fourth floor. At the entrance, the
lanes split, making room for wide drop-off curbs with ample
space for departure rituals. The canopy over the departures
roadway flows seamlessly from the head house interior,
through the glass curtain wall, to the outside. The 40m

canopy cantilevers shelter travellers from the sun and

monsoon rain. Attention to detail is paid to the treatment of
the exterior curb area, which is given the same level of finish
as the terminals polished interior.
The terminals roofone of the largest in the world
without an expansion jointensures further terminal
flexibility. The long-span capabilities of the steel truss
structure allow for the spacing of the thirty 130ft columns to
be far enough apart to not only give a feeling of openness to
the large processing areas below, but also to allow for
maximum flexibility in the arrangement of check-in counters
and other necessary processing facilities.


Taking cues from traditional Indian architecture, the peacock

feather and the existing logo of the Mumbai Airport, the ceiling
and columns are defined by a coffered surface. The coffers
transition from the horizontal plane of the ceiling to the arch of
the column capitals. The result is a highly articulated and
undulating surface comprising individual cast units. The
individual coffers have lenses integrated into the cast form
which allow light to enter the hall from strategically placed
skylights above.
From the central retail area, passengers descent into the
concourses (or piers) where the aircraft gates are located. Paved
in polished stone and warm wooden ceiling, the waiting areas



are lit by chandeliers that resemble lotus flowers, with cast glass
centres and cut metal petals. The warm wood ceiling is
actually metal, printed with a realistic facsimile of wood.
Although the terminal is four storeys, interconnecting light
slots and multi-storey light wells ensure that light penetrates
into the lower floors of the building, acting as a constant
reminder of the surrounding city and landscape. At dusk,
illuminated from within, the terminal glows like a sculpted
chandelier. Custom sculptural lighting fixtures reference
traditional Indian textile motifs. In the baggage claim hall,
where heavy passenger congestion calls for a relatively
column-free space, columns were placed within the baggage
claim belts.
The roof mega-columns and steel roof structure were kept
completely independent from the base concrete structures
below. The final design resulted in a departure hall entirely
free of columns through the use of composite mega-columns
spaced 64m in one direction and 34m in the perpendicular
direction. The structural system for the head house roof is
akin to a two-way flat slab system. Increasing the depth of
the trusses near the columns and running trusses in an
orthogonal grid as well as along a 45 grid results in an
overall truss depth of 4m for the roof system. The greater
truss depths near the columns create column pod areas,


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN


3.5m to 4m Deep Steel Roof Trusses


Composite Mega Column

ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4


which seamlessly integrate into the pyramidal skylights that

serve as major architectural features.
The terminal building features two separate cable wall
systems totalling over 1km in length and 11,000sq m in area,
making it the longest and largest cable wall in the world. Both
cable walls comprise unidirectional cables spanning vertically
between two levels of the terminal structure. A large portion of
the wall follows the curvature of the plan of the head house
roof, a feature only achievable because the cable wall consists
solely of vertical cables. Variations in height, changes in
anchoring conditions, and the inclusion of corners, curves and
entrance vestibules all worked to necessitate a very precise
design of cable pretension.
The roof measures approximately 17-acres in area. Each
column measures 4.2mx3.4m rising from the ground to a


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

height of 40m. The structure of the feature columns is

concrete encased steel. The steel has a cruciform plan and is
2.3mx2.3 m. The concrete encasing is 2.7m in diameter. Each
feature column has two drainage pipes which take the runoff
water from the roof and drain it out of the building. Each
pipe is 400mm in diameter.
The exterior feature columns appear identical to the
interior ceiling and columns, which are rendered in panels of
glass fibre reinforced gypsum (GFRG). The ceiling in both the
interior of the check-in hall and international security
screening area and the exterior space which covers the
departures curbs is 15m in clear height.
Mega skylights are located over 28 of the feature columns
bringing natural light into the head house. As many as 244
minor skylights distribute natural light between the feature

columns enabling the head house to achieve daylight

autonomy throughout the day for a majority of the year.
There is a total of approximately 30,000sq m of skylight glass.
Terminal 2 uses a high-performance glazing system with a
custom frit pattern to achieve optimal thermal performance
and mitigate glare. Perforated metal panels on the terminals
curtain wall filter the low western and eastern sun angles,
creating a comfortable day-lit space for waiting passengers,
and responsive daylight controls balance outdoor and indoor
light levels for optimal energy savings. Strategically placed
skylights throughout the check-in hall reduce the terminals
energy usage by 23%.

winner in The interior Finishes Category - CISCA ( Ceiling & Interior

System Construction Association, North America), etc.
Client: GVK, Mumbai International Airport Pvt Ltd
Architects: SOM, Location at Multiple Places
Structural & MEP Engineer: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP
Architect, Structural & MEP Engineer of Record: Larsen & Toubro Limited
(EDRC Division)
General Contractor: Larsen & Toubro Limited (ECC Division)
Lighting Design: Brandston Partnership Inc, SPIERS and MAJORS Associates
Retail Design: The Design Solution
Landscape Design: Hyland Edgar Driver (HED)
Cultural Design Collaboration: Abu Jani Sandeep Khosla

The project has also been felicitated with many awards, such as
the LEED India for New construction Gold from Indian Green
Building Council, NCSEA National Council of structural Engineers
Association - Excellence in Structural Engineering Award, Gold


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

Art Scenographer: Rajeev Sethi

Communication, IT, Security & Special Systems: Mulvey & Banani
Signage & Wayfinding: Pentagram & Entro Communication
Vertical Transportation: Van Deusen & Associates
Year of completion: 2014

Jury Outcome

Architecture+Design and CERA take immense pleasure in announcing the jury outcome of the
eleventh cycle of the Architecture+Design & CERA Awards 2014. A panel of thirty architects
participated in the recently concluded jury meet. There was a group of five jurists respectively for
each category. The jury panelists included eminent architects from all over the country as well as
from South-East-Asia and Europe. This led the jury meets to acquire a wider perspective in gauging
creativity. The jury conclusions were at times unanimous and at other times a healthy disagreement
of opinions leading to debates and discussions for the final outcome.

The Golden Award for Global Contribution in Architecture: William J R Curtis

The Golden Architect Award-India:

Rahul Mehrotra

The Hall of Fame Award:

Shirish Beri

Award For Residence Design with a Difference

Principal Awardee

Sandeep J

Deepak Guggari Bavadekar Praveen


Hiren Patel

Vimal Jain

Sandeep J
Architecture Paradigm,

Wilson Garden House,

The Institutional Architecture Award for Design

Development of Institutional/ Office Buildings
Principal Awardee

Manish Gulati

Sanjay Puri

Hiren Patel

Rajesh Shivaram

Anupam Bansal

 Manish Gulati
MOFA Studio Pvt Ltd,
New Delhi

National Institute of
Fashion Technogoly,

& CERA Awards 2014


The award
function for this cycle
is slated to take place in
Istanbul, Turkey, on the
15th of November, 2014.
Felicitations to the

The Golden Emerging Architect - Singapore:

Chang Yong Ter
The Golden Emerging Architect - Malaysia:
Mohd Razin Mahmood
The Golden Emerging Architect - Thailand:
Patama Roonrakwit
The Golden Emerging Architect - Sri Lanka:
Narein Perera
The Awardee for The Golden Emerging Architect - Turkey is currently
being processed by the Society of Practising Architects, Turkey.



Jadhav House, Pune

 Deepak Guggari
Varsha & Deepak Guggari Associates,
 Bavadekar Praveen Sharad
Third Space Architecture Studio,


 Sanjay Puri
Sanjay Puri Architects,

Special Mentions

Hiren Patel
Hiren Patel Architects,

The Courtyard House,

The house with two Sheesham

Trees, Belgaum

 Vimal Jain
Architecture Paradigm, Bangalore

Sheela Jain Residence,



Special Mentions


A Pavilion, Surat

 Hiren Patel
Hiren Patel Architects,

A Community Centre,

 Rajesh Shivaram
Technoarchitecture Inc, Bangalore

Technoarchitecture Office
Extension, Bangalore

 Anupam Bansal
ABRD Architects Pvt Ltd, New Delhi

National Centre for Biological

Sciences, Bangalore

The Recreational Architecture Award

Principal Awardee

Ambrish Arora

A Midrul

Namith Verma

Akshat Bhatt

Ambrish Arora and

Rajiv Majumdar
The Lotus Praxis Initiative,
New Delhi

RAAS, Jodhpur

The Innovative Interior Design Award for

Office/ Commercial Utility Interior Design.
Principal Awardee

Kanhai Gandhi

Ambrish Arora

Sanjay Puri

Madhav Raman


Kanhai Gandhi,
Neemesh Shah,
Shresht Kashyap
KNS Architects Pvt Ltd,

Space within a Space,


 A Midrul
A Midrul Architect, Jodhpur

Birkha Bawari, Jodhpur

Special Mentions

Namith Verma
Gayathri & Namith Architects
Pvt Ltd, Bangalore

 Akshat Bhatt
Architecture Discipline, New Delhi


 Ambrish Arora
Lotus, New Delhi

Gaurav Gupta,
New Delhi

Special Mentions

 Sanjay Puri
Sanjay Puri Architects, Mumbai
 Madhav Raman
Anagram Architects, New Delhi

Gorukana, BR Hills,
Hotel Mana, Udaipur

Auriga, Mumbai

Anagram Office,
New Delhi

Book Building,
 Mahesh Radhakrishnan
The Madras Office for Architects and Chennai
Designers (MOAD), Chennai

Post Jury

Post Jury

The Innovative Interior Design Award for

Residence Interior Design
Principal Awardee

Arjun Malik

Deepak Guggari

Shilpa Gore-Shah


Tushar V

Arjun Malik
Malik Architecture,

The Architects Loft,

The Young Enthused Architect Award

Principal Awardee

Akshat Bhatt

Swapnil Valvatkar

Rajesh Shivaram

Sourabh Gupta

Brinda Parth Shah

Lester Rozario

Post Jury

Akshat Bhatt
Architecture Discipline,
New Delhi

Discovery Centre,
Bangalore & Hotel Mana,
Ranakpur, Udaipur



Jadhav House, Pune

 Deepak Guggari
Varsha & Deepak Guggari Associates,

Special Mentions

Shilpa Gore-Shah &

Pinkish Shah
S+PS Architects, Mumbai

Liminal Living, Mumbai

Mrs Uma Raja's Residence,

 Prasanna Parvatikar
Cubism Architects & Interiors, Tirupur Tamil Nadu
 Shruti Keshavamurthy &
Tushar V
Ochre, Bangalore

 Swapnil Valvatkar
Collage Architecture Studio,

Marvel Domicilia, Bangalore
& Cricket House, Bangalore

Special Mentions

Shruti Tushar Apartment

Design, Bangalore


Rajesh Shivaram
Technoarchitecture Inc,

M House, Bangalore &

Technoarchitecture Office
Extension, Bangalore

Lester Rozario
Kamat & Rozario Architecture,

Stack house, Bangalore &

Hanging House, Bangalore

Sourabh Gupta
Archohm Consults, Noida

Dilli Haat, New Delhi &

Yogananda Library, Solan

Brinda Parth Shah

BPS Architects, Rajkot

Raj Samadhiyala House, Rajkot

& Sanjeevani - Biodiversity
Resource Conservation Area


Saleh Mosque, Sanaa, Yemen

Sustainability and Memory

By Niranjan Garde

his article is an attempt to

express how the approach of
sustainability (or frugal living) is
related to the feelings of memory,
belonging and in the creation of our
personal identities and what role it
plays in modern lifestyle.
My parents and grandparents
generation grew up in the period of
just means. Nothing was abundant or
in plentiful and it became a necessity


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

to use each and everything sparingly,

to its fullest possible utility, even
surpassing the life cycle of the material
itself. If the material was not fit for use
in its present form, then it used to be
ingeniously transformed (or reused)
into something else, till another such
cycle of transformation came about
and the process continued. Take for
example a simple shawl or a light
blanket. The shawl would be used by

my grandparents, then successively

passed on to my parents and probably,
if the condition was good enough, it
could come all the way to me. It is with
everything from best shirts to photo
frames, to cooking utensils. It is quite
amazing to see that many of our
households have a collection of what
can be termed as vintage collection of
cooking ware, linens, woollen ware,
gadgets, pens, letters, writing desks,

long as the object is with you. The

sewing machines, toys, dolls, bats,
object, without us being conscious of it,
rackets, books and so on. They are all,
has already become a part of our
what I call as memory banks. They
consciousness that defines our
perform the same role, as a loving
identities. It is this effect of association
letter that my father has written to me
that compels people in a country like
a couple of times. They denote the
India, to retain such objects long after
same care and love, as you glance
they might not have any utilitarian
through your photo album and recall
value. Sometimes, long after children
the moments that you had spent as a
have grown up and their woollen ware
child with your extended family.
cannot fit them, such items are reused
Although the old dusty, cranky, heavy,
and transformed into woollen socks or
oxidised copper cooking ware would
have now been replaced by the
sleek, shiny, light stainless steel,
people prefer to keep the old
cooking utensils in loft areas and
mentally in one of the
compartments of their minds.
The old and heavy copper
cooking ware utensil, now
redundant, reminds my parents
about the delicious dishes that
were cooked and cherished along
with the children and which
created some special moments of
togetherness. The defunct
technology of heating water by
using copper cylindrical drum
and coils, replaced by geysers
and consecutively by solar
panels, reminds my father and
his siblings of their childhood
and the quarrels and laughter
Creation of meaning by sustainable use of objects
that they had shared in the
bathroom or the shout that they
woollen scarfs. The form of the object
experienced from their mother for
might have changed, but the memory
lazing around in the bathroom. Herein
lingers as one sees the socks again.
I wish to highlight a connection the
Another aspect of sustainability is to
economic necessity of perpetual use of
do things by ourselves. In frugal
a particular item results in forming a
conditions, there is no subletting of
relation with that object. The
relationship deepens as more and more jobs. We build our own houses; we
cook food ourselves because we cannot
of our existential moments are spent
afford to sublet it. But, building a
with the object of use and enriches as
house together as a group of people
more people get associated with the
introduces numerous instances of
same object. Memories of the people
in this way get inter connected with the interactions and lively encounters.
There is hardship no doubt, but
same object and result in highly
collective moments are spent, one
nostalgic dialogues when people meet
shares ones life secrets as one is
after a gap of time. The object already
engaged in plastering or painting a wall
surpasses its primary role of utility and
and the entire process gets a high
gets highly value ridden. The
emotional quotient. Later on, as one
memories, emotions get recalled as

touches the finished wall or leans on it

or looks at it, these memories surge
back in mind. The wall might be
slightly off-aligned or there might have
been some unevenly painted spots but
it has become a family member, telling
us of the peoples collective
involvement with it. In such a scenario,
would mechanical perfection or
aesthetics of the wall matter? It is the
same for cooking. Agreed, that I have
to spend time to cook food, but the act
of preparing, cooking and serving
family members becomes a part
of our expression to connect with
them at an emotional level that
cannot be understood by
intellectual analysis. Feelings of
belonging and community are
created in this way. Objects can
be made value ridden, provided
we spend time with them.
Provided we make a conscious
choice before any object is
replaced. There might be
hardship and involvement of time
and our labour for doing things
ourselves, but it can also give us
the opportunity to form
connections with other people.
This brings me finally to another
aspect of modern lifestyle.
The abundance of products in
the market and the general trend
of consumerisation, further fuelled by
robust economic conditions have led to
fast turnover of objects of use and
lessening of our involvement with them
in the process of creation. It leads me to
ponder what sort of connection one
might develop with the object, if we
hardly let it mingle with us for a
sustained duration? Can these
physically temporary objects (soon to
be replaced by their new competitors)
ever generate any emotional ties or
memories with us? What would
happen, if we sublet all our tasks to
external agencies? Do we give ourselves
a chance to make such objects a part of
our lives or, have our perspectives
towards looking at them been detached
by the realisation that they are soon to

ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4


Market Hall, Rotterdam; Architects: MVRDV, Rotterdam

be replaced by newer variety? If

everything around us is constantly
getting replaced by something
different or new, where does that
leave us? Or, in terms of the aspect of
subletting, why should we ever bother
to cook or build houses or mend lawns?
How, then, would our memories be
created by the fleeting interactions with
these objects and by increased
preferences to sublet things? Or would
memories remain transient as the
objects themselves, so that not even a
single memory ever gets a chance to be
embedded in our minds and create
impressions of life? If memories remain
transient, what does that make us as
individuals? What sort of identity is
created and what sort of life is
experienced? This has repercussions on
our lifestyles, on the way we look at
ourselves and our people around us.
Personal space and liberty is fine, but
where does it lead us as a human
community? If we dont share moments


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

of our time (and space) with other

individuals, if all our objects are
different (and transient as well) then
one must ponder on the quality of life
one is heading to. Abundance, luxury,
flexibility and the affordability to be in
constant change with regards to house,
jobs (and even relations for that matter)
can have a detrimental effect on the
nature of relations we form amongst
ourselves as communities. History and
culture is a product of memory.
Constant change would mean no
memory and that would mean no
history at all. Part of who we are or
become depends on our association
with memories people, places and
objects. Therefore, the experience of
constant newness and constant change
has to be viewed critically.
Sustained use has the power to form
relations with objects just as precious as
our relations with loving people around
us. Doing things by oneself may mean
being frugal again, but that is what

leads to involvement. Thus the

necessity of reuse or recycle or
whatever term one wants to assign for
sustainability has an advantage of
memory creation. To be involved with
such an approach would lead to
memories that we would dwell on long
after our functional value diminishes.
It is at that point of time that the
objects and the people around us
would be our faithful friends telling us
about the trials, mistakes and moments
of joys that we had experienced
resulting in the ripening of our lives.
And it is therefore, in this context itself,
those important objects, landscapes,
architectural spaces need to be retained
sometimes, for, they vibrate with
stories of our connections with the past
and can make our present meaningful.
It is with this concept, the entire Indian
landscape across the nation can be
seen and experienced and which
fundamentally differs from the
industrial landscapes of the North
Americas or Australia.
I hope, we understand, that old
does not mean outdated or primitive in
anyway. What is required is the right
attitude towards seeing any object and
the realisation that every object that
we keep for ourselves has the
possibility to create value and be an
extension of our Self. What we wish
to possess starts to define who we are
or become. If we continue to replace
everything, there is no attachment with
anything and there is no association of
memory. Let not the abundance of
objects and its faster replacement by
ever changing technology create a
situation that you are not able to
express yourself in terms of the
external environment. Or a situation,
wherein no object or a person or any
environment triggers your memory. Let
not you experience the modern
equivalent of Alzheimer.

Niranjan Garde is an architect currently

based in Pune, who has an interest on
issues related to history, culture and
identity in architecture.

Institutional Design

A Metaphor of Function

Bhujpal Knowledge City (MET, League of College), Nashik

By Pramod Beri

he number of buildings being built under the

category of Institutional Architecture is growing
at a fast pace in post independent India and
especially in the last two decades. The main thrust has
been in educational and scientific fields, besides
public realm institutional architecture, which is
also noteworthy.
In an institutional building the users spend time in
the spatio-form created by an architect for a longer
period of time, compared to brief usage in a museum
or a hospital. Hence, the spatio-formal vocabulary of
such a building has to go beyond mere objective
function and transcend into the subjective feelings
part of architecture.


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

A couplet from an Urdu gazal summarises the

emotive aspect involved (translation in English) The forms of the building, the doors and windows
have no relationship with us, unless the building ties
us with its unseen emotional threads.
vocabulary should be a metaphor of its function, a
symbol for the act. The inner spaces should answer
the feelings part of architecture as to what aspect of
feeling, be it that of impose, dignity, eminence,
solidarity, poise, grandeur, regimentality, solace,
warmth, affirmation, etc. The external envelope in a
subtle way should convey the purpose of the building,
a kind of metaphor of its function.

The building should have circulation spaces which

go beyond the mundane aspect of transportation
from portion A to B, but should include nodal spatial
points which promote chance encounters. The
circulation spaces should have pause spaces that
create and retain interest.
It should have dynamic interrelationships between
outer and inner space as well as between inner and
semienclosed spaces like the courtyard. Careful interactiveness between these spaces is the key. Courtyards
are dedicated enclosures of the borrowed universal
space and besides providing light and ventilation,
should also provide spaces for informal interactions.
The building should create a spatial experience
which touches deeper levels of consciousness in us,
thereby, enabling us to see and feel the world in a
different way. As the famous saying goes, We make
spaces and in turn spaces make us, the quality of
space should enhance the quality of life. Well

University of Minnesota Science Teaching & Student Service Center,

Minneapolis, MN

executed spaces and buildings are bound to effect a

new gestalt like change in behavioural patterns
between users.
An apt relationship between service spaces and
served spaces should be in effect. Any institutional
building is bound to have lots of service spaces which
need to be discreetly located with skill without
sacrificing their utility. The service spaces should have
an easy but discreet access and also should be close
enough to served spaces to save on transportation
time. Service towers, if required, should be
functionally large enough to accommodate services
which can be installed and serviced at ease. In all
probability, they could be turned into an architectural


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

The latest technology available should be exploited
to the fullest extent. All over the globe, technology is
changing at a rapid pace. This conflicts with the fact
that buildings are used for decades together. Hence
flexibility should be the key. Easily interchangeable
modular spaces need to be provided to create an easy
transition from utilization of a space to another
purpose. The various services that serve the space
should be easily interchangeable as technology
advances. An equipotentally designed space
proactively adapts to changing needs.
To have a meaningful interface between art and
architecture, murals or sculptures can be introduced
which immediately convey the raison-detre of the
building. The architect needs to sit with the artist,
proactively suggesting feelings he wants to convey
through the portrayed imagery.
The building should be eco-friendly and
sustainable. Sustainability has become an important
factor especially in design of an institutional building
where multiple consultants are employed. Careful
examination of technologies and materials available
and their appropriate usage should be a part of the
main design agenda.
In the Indian context, the last important aspect is
to think globally but act locally. This involves
carefully weighing the pros and cons and decides
between use of local materials/technologies vs
outstation/imported ones. The five elements of nature
the Panchmahabhutas need to be deftly resourced
to avoid overuse of energy.
Certain design vocabulary cannot be conveyed at
an intellectual level, it should emerge from the intuitive
zone of consciousness. Because of increased pace of life,
over population, overall public apathy, etc., our
physical as well as emotional space is being encroached
upon, creating numbness in our sensitivity. The building
we design needs to act as an oasis which can rejuvenate
and regenerate. Only when the architectural space
designed by us gets a nod in the inner deep emotive
space of the person using it, only then the dialogue
between him/her and the building starts, creating a
deep sense of satiation. The process starts when we
expend the brief given by the client and convert it into
value based deeply impregnated spaces which will add
life and spirit. Let our designs answer these invisible
aspects creating an architecture of belonging, honesty,
simplicity and spontaneity.
Photo courtesy: A+D archives

Pramod Beri is the chairman of Beri Architects and

Engineers Pvt Ltd, a Pune-based firm.

Institutional Design


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Inter-connected Spaces
Project: Polymer Science & Engineering Laboratory, Pune, Maharashtra
Architects: Beri Architects & Engineers Pvt Ltd, Kolhapur

he word polymer in chemistry recalls to our mind,

polygonal shapes with main/sub-linkages. Seeking the
inspiration from this, a building form akin to the
element Benzene was explored and used as a formative
statement. The central courtyard with an atom related
sculpture connects with the various laboratories while service
areas between the laboratories act as sub-linkages.

Creation of linked yet separate laboratory wings has many

functional advantages possibility of inter connectivity from
both outer and inner corridors; it is service-friendly; has rear
access to each laboratory via an outer ring road; there are
laboratory-wise separate energy controls for optimum usage;
fire protection friendly; plenty of light and cross ventilation
is achieved through courtyard; and creation of microclimate


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Client: National Chemical Laboratory, Pune
Design team: Pramod Beri (Job Captain), Ar Mohan Bhasme, Er Hindurao Patil
Consultants: Upendra Deuskar, M/s Anand Electricals (Electrical), S C Garge, Ishaan
(Fire Hydrant Consultant), Shri Shridhar Sanglikar, Apurva Service Consultants
(PHE /HVAC), Mahesh Nampurkar, Dream Presidency (Landscape Design),
Sanjay Newaskar (Interior Designer), N M Deodhar Consulting Engineers
Contractor: Engineering Projects India Ltd
Built-up area: 6200sq m
Cost of project: Rs 15 crore
Year of completion: 2009


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by green sheltered spaces between the laboratories.

The building creates adequate opportunities for chance
meetings between the scientists at every juncture of external
and internal corridors. Hexagonal form fosters closer bonds
among various research groups. Each laboratory is unique,
hence creates a sense of identity. Senior scientists have
privacy as well as proximity to their labs.
The feelings part of architecture, which is invisible, also
receives equal importance in the spatio-formal context. The
building compliments and acknowledges the existence of
various buildings on the existing campus, especially the main
building, while proposing radical insertion of a new theme.
The result is a dynamically vibrant spatial statement, with its
own distinct identity.


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The administrative wing is partially separated with

controlled access to the research laboratory section. The
administrative section also has provision of an exhibition
room, a 100-seater auditorium and a canteen. The site slopes
gradually in east-west direction. As a result, the wings adapt
to the existing levels. The central green space with a
sculptural statement is enhanced by stair-towers cladded with
reflective glass. The multiple reflection of the central
courtyard is a delight to experience.


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Institutional Design

Three-Winged Swastik
Project: Emergency Management & Research Institute (EMRI), Ahmedabad
Architects: Studio Eethetics, Ahmedabad

he architectural solution for the EMRI stemmed from

the thought that preconditioned the simultaneous
involution of excelling in functionality, environmental
concern/aesthetic values and depicting fresh approach with
reference to context.


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The clients complex brief, the location challenges (busy,

noisy traffic junction), scorching heat and symbolic iconic
value, time constrain (75,000sq ft state-of-the-art
type/completion time with interiors in 10 months), required
the architect to come up with an innovative design.

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6 6

6 6










8 8





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8 8

8 8

8 8


The architecture was required to be right rather than good.

The design derivation was integral and simultaneous.
The EMRI got sub divided under basic three types (nature)
of activity administration, call centre and training centre
(educative), all of three required to be inter-connected and
interactive. This resulted in a simple triangular placement of
three blocks with a central cylinder, reception/foyer, commonly
allowing entry to all blocks.
The institute conceived to render service to mankind, being
dynamic in nature, it was responsible for the three winged
swastik plan formation. The protective (sound/heat/visual
barrier) crescent-like service wing, placed in a pin wheel
shaped-position, balances and lands it a self contained/self
content equilibrium required, resulting in a circle.
To be able to answer fastness, finesse and economic
execution part, the architect followed a very simple thought
common product module (flooring 2x2, shuttering 2x4) to
govern the plan elevation making, resulting in floor lines,
and following up the exposed concrete walls. The curvilinear
wall shuttering was appropriated by wooden pattern. In
addition this helped to reduce the wastage.


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Client: Govt of Gujarat

These rational thoughts had allowed the outcome to be

what it wanted to be (unprecedented) as against
prejudiced, preconceived, predetermined biases, employed
as temptations to make something, rather than allowing it to
become a built form.


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Design team: Team Studio Eethetics

Consultants: Jhaveri Associate (MEP), Amee Associate (Structure)
Contractors: Shanti Constructions
Built-up area: 75000sq ft
Cost of project: Rs 14.5 crore
Year of completion: 2010

Institutional Design

Subterranean School
Project: Professional School Hanna Arendt, Bolzano, Italy
Architects: Cleaa Claudio Lucchin & architetti associate, Bolzano, Italy

anna Arendt School in Bolzano is the first

underground school in Italy. Designed as the extension
of the professional existing school, it highlights the
unexpected potentialities of the underground architecture,
challenging the limits of the sustainability culture thought so
far, as well as the contemporary design in historic centres.
The idea of not altering the ancient architectural context of
the Capuchin friars convent protected by the national
heritage association but the need for new spaces and
classrooms, gave the architect the opportunity to create a
subterranean school appendix: four levels excavated 17m


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underground in which nine classrooms, six workshops, a winter

garden and a utility room were placed. The challenge led the
architects to solve consequent problems not only as structural,
but particularly environmental issues.
The connection between the old building and the new one
takes form of an extension to the existing corridor located at
the first floor. Lit through large glasses, and enclosed by a
wall acting as a scenic backdrop, this extension features as
the only new architectonic element visible above the ground.
The four underground floors were built after an initial
stabilisation of the area with micro poles and a reinforced

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concrete structure. The rooms were distributed around the

central void; starting from the top, the first two floors host
classrooms; the third floor hosts the workshops and the last
one is a utility room.
The lighting design was one of the main topics of the
intervention: constant use of glazed surfaces in the large
skylights and glass walls of the rooms lets natural light
penetrate through all the internal spaces, allowing a special,
continuous visual connection with the outside. Therefore, the
atrium garden, the small winter garden and a series of skylights
and solar chimneys give more light and air to the whole
building. The artificial lighting is controlled by neon sensors
varying temperature based on the time of the day and the
weather conditions outside.




2. LAB



1. LAB

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Humidity has been removed inserting in the walls several

layers consisting of insulation, sheathing and plaster spray
that also provides protection against ingress of radon gas; to
recall the excavation, the walls have an irregular surface.
Ventilation is guaranteed by programmed recycling of the air
regulated by a mechanical system through ceiling diffusers
or grilles integrated into the built-in wardrobes.
Due to the glass walls, many viewpoints allow to perceive
the building in all its depth. The central court and the fullheight voids play with the materiality of the exposed concrete
walls. The connection elements, such as the big yellow staircase


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Client: Province of Bolzano
Design team: Claudio Lucchin/Cleaa
Contractor: ZH General Construction Company AG (Group leader);
Gaetano Paolin Spa, Gufler Bau Gmbh (Mandators)
Consultants: Herbert Mayer (Structure), Ing Marina Bolzan
(Mechanical Plants), Ing Reinhard Thaler (Electrical Plants),
Arch Roberto DAmbrogio (Safety Coordinator)
Area: 2030sq m
Cost of project: 6.420.000 euro
Year of completion: 2012



and the walkways punctuate the whole space; alongside the

paths, numerous niches have been created as small private
rooms for studying.
Particular attention has been focused on the critical factors
of underground architecture natural light, space feeling and
humidity. The architectural choices have been a consequence of
the importance given to natural light. The result is a play of
solids and voids, where light permeates throughout the digging
through horizontal skylights and vertical windows that overlook
inner and outer shafts. The classrooms, labs and common areas
have always one or more natural light sources making the
building similar to a building above the ground.
The artificial lighting is controlled by sensors that regulate
it according to natural light coming from the outside to
promote energy saving. In addition, the use of lights
changing temperature depending on the time of the day has
been included to get closer to the real conditions of the
external environment.
The intention was to create a space in which the user cant
run the risk of being in narrow or claustrophobic. The idea
was to give the building a large visual permeability:

classrooms have one or more sides fully glazed in order to

promote the perception of a wide space. Many glimpses
reveal to the user the building in all its depth.
The main court forms an underground urban square. The
large skylight above the court makes the sky visible from the
square and the classroom. The visual connection with the
outside world is found also in other places through smaller
skylights offering impressive views.
A mechanical ventilation system helps maintaining healthy
air in various environments, guaranteeing a constant
replacement four times an hour. Because of the need to cool
it even during the winter, the classrooms are air-conditioned
with an implant, which also ensures the necessary air
exchange and the control of radon concentration.
The system is organised in zones equipped with postheating batteries; there is the independent regulation of the
individual environments. The air is pre-treated in an air
handling unit equipped with built-in refrigerator for cooling
in the mid-season and during the summer.
Photo credit: Alessandra Chemollo

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Architecture+Design feels proud to once
again have had the opportunity to bring
across to our readers the diversity and
rationality of the thoughts of noted
architectural historian and critic,
William J R Curtis.
On behalf of the magazine, architectural
critic Rajnish Wattas interacted with
William J R Curtis

Photo credit: William J R Curtis, 2009

we carry a few extracts...

Timeless but of its time; ray of light in the Oratory of the Monastery of La Tourette, Le Corbusier, 1954-8


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William J R Curtis: First of all let me say something about

criticism itself. The word criticism comes from a Greek word
signifying the separation of the good wheat from the bad. It is
about identifying quality and rejecting the lack of it. In my
opinion there are no recipes for criticism. Architecture is a
complex phenomenon which touches people on many
different levels. Buildings may fuse together ideas and forms,
images and materials, function and structure, social myths and
poetic spaces. They occupy time in complex ways, crystallizing
a present, transforming diverse pasts, anticipating unknown
futures. Architecture is concerned with power but is never a
direct expression of an ideology: it is an idealization of social
and political processes and of institutions. Architecture is
rooted in society but possesses a reality of its own.
As a historian and critic I am interested in penetrating to
the anatomy of intentions within a work, the structures of
thought, and the ways in which the architect translates
multiple realities through the language of architecture. What
architects create is more important than what they say, and I
insist upon the direct experience of buildings themselves.
Works of real interest transcend movements and isms and
possess a unique order of their own. The critic must remain
open to fresh innovations, while retaining a sense of history
and of what is fundamental in the art of architecture a vision
of what counts in the long term. I am interested in qualities
which carry well beyond transient fashions. There is nothing
more provincial than the present.
One needs to experience buildings first hand on their sites,
with people in and around them, with unfolding vistas, with
materials, textures and details under changing light. One needs
to grasp the general ideas and to sense the internal conflicts of
the design. There is no substitute for the deep reading of a
work. It is especially important to do this at a time of spurious
theorising which asphyxiates architecture with clouds of
jargon. It is crucial just now to debate the past, present and
future of architecture, to open the doors to younger
generations who are often kept out of the account. It is always
good to be surprised by fresh new ideas, as long as they are
substantial and not just marketing tricks in the media game of
fashion and promotion. The critic needs to approach recent
work undogmatically, to let the architecture speak for itself.

RW: Can you discern any single big idea or style that is
propelling architecture the world over today?
WJRC: There is no single key to contemporary architecture just
as there is no shortcut to understanding the recent past. This has
been a confused and pluralist period covering a very wide range
of production in an ever wider field of global practice. At one
extreme are the much discussed iconic buildings, often linked
up with real estate capitalism, cultural marketing and the
branding of cities in the networks of investment and tourism. At
the other are works of such immense subtlety and topographical
sensitivity that they almost disappear although they touch all of
the senses and reveal something about the spirit and history of
places. You have only to stop for a moment and compare the
Dubai phenomenon on one side with a lone wolf figure like
Peter Zumthor on the other to see what I mean. In these
circumstances one cannot speak about a dominant tendency or
about any obvious canon. The critic has to be on the alert for

Photo credit: William J R Curtis, 2004

ajnish Wattas (RW): You are known as a historian and

critic, but you are also a photographer and an artist.
When navigating through the architecture of the recent
past you insist upon the centrality of the architectural work
itself as the true subject of criticism as against the theoretical
rationalisations which are often deployed as promotional
rhetoric by architects or their supporters. Are you able to
sketch a critical map of recent architecture including some of
the prevalent themes?

Column of light: the Church of the Jacobins, Toulouse, 14th century

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interesting or awful work in many shapes and sizes. As usual

quality transcends style.
While the architectural production of recent years has
suffered from architectural excesses and from a thoughtless
process of frantic urbanisation (especially in China and the
petroleum states) it has also been a period rich in new creative
directions and it will take some time to discern the overall
shape. Just think of the vast range in the last few years all the
way from the spatial gymnastics of the Guangzhou Opera
House in China by Zaha Hadid to the restrained and
understated Folkwang Museum by David Chipperfield, to the
rich spatial qualities of the Fundacao Ibere Camargo in Porto
Alegre by Alvaro Siza, to the cool restraint of the New Media
Lab at MIT by Fumihiko Maki. Are any of these works
masterpieces? No, but they do bear witness to the different
expressive territories that are being opened up. Moreover each
has a different pedigree and orientation to the past.

we have to react to. It is not the function of criticism to try to

ram individual buildings into simplistic stylistic or theoretical
categories. One needs to distinguish between mediocre and
quality results. Putting it simply: there are complex curves,
folds and irregular geometries which mean something and
which add to the stock of authentic architectural inventions;
and there are others (too many in fact!) that are meaningless
and arbitrary, that are ugly to look at, hell to live in and
destructive of their setting whether in landscape or city. Many
of the buildings that fly the flag of geometrical complexity

WJRC: When attempting to draw a critical map of recent

architecture there are possibly two extremes to be avoided. One
says that anything goes; the other tries to claim a dominant
discourse for a particular school of thought. The first approach
embraces a total pluralism. It implies that everything is about
equal and that we are floating on the surface with trend
following trend like changes of clothes. This position often hides
behind the star system by reducing architecture to lists of famous
names and prizes. It is the vanity fair of architecture.
The second approach rests upon the belief that each period
has its dominant formal expression. In this model an
individual or group elects itself as the exclusive owner of the
historical process. Today some try to promote parametricism
as the architecture of the times as a new global style. But
their argument is simply rhetorical especially in a period when
there are so many different approaches. Moreover no two
people can agree on the meaning of the term parametric. Is
it referring to a method or a style? If it is a method there is no
reason at all that the forms should end up with complex
geometry. If it is a style there are many ways of achieving
complex geometry without any single method. The links in this
ideological fiction are rather loose. Anyway the real question
for the critic is this: do the results succeed as architecture?
RW: So critical judgements must be based on built
architectural results, not on transient images or fancy sounding
theoretical agendas?
WJRC: Architecture speaks its own language and that is what


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Photo credit: William J R Curtis, 1983

RW: So any attempt to speak of a style of the times or a

privileged theoretical position is doomed from the start? Does
that mean that this is an era of star architects and individual
landmark projects without any dominating ism?

Modern technology, abstraction and dematerialisation: the St Louis

Arch by Eero Saarinen, 1949-60

are in fact rather simple minded and have no staying power.

One has to keep coming back to the realm of specifically
architectural ideas and to buildings in real space not just to
seductive images on a computer screen in virtual space.
Mathematical tricks on the computer are no substitute for
substantial architectural thinking, a rigorous architectural
language and a culture to back them up. Is there anyone
around today who can equal the sculptural power and

symbolic resonance of the shells of Sydney Opera House? Or

who can match the haunting presence, multiple meanings,
spatial and geometrical sophistication of the curved funnel of
the Assembly building in Chandigarh? In these cases the curves
are embedded in the deep order of the building itself and in
the mythical structure of the architects creative universe.
There is a huge difference between an abstraction which distils
experience and content, and one which ends up with mere
shape making for the sake of shape making. The latter results
in empty gestures: a vapid formalism.

Photo credit: William J R Curtis, 1989

William J R Curtis
(1948) is a historian,
critic, painter and
photographer. He studied
at the Courtauld Institute,
London and Harvard
University and has taught
at many universities
including Harvard and the
Architectural Association.
In 2003-4, he was Slade
Professor of Fine Art at
William J R Curtis
the University of
Cambridge. Among his best known books are the classics
Modern Architecture Since 1900 (Phaidon, 3rd edition,
1996) and Le Corbusier: Ideas and Forms (Phaidon, 1986)
(both translated into numerous languages); also Balkrishna
Doshi: an Architecture for India (Mapin, Rizzoli, 1988) and
Denys Lasdun: Architecture, City, Landscape (Phaidon,
1994). Curtis has written over a dozen other books as well
as texts on Indian architecture, ancient and modern,
including introductions to monographs on Raj Rewal
(1986) and Anant Raje Architect (2012).

The eternal presence of great architecture: Saqqara, Egypt, 3rd

millennium BC

RW: In some recent literature technological mystification is

overlaid with smokescreens of theoretical jargon.
WJRC: Yes certainly. Needed is an undogmatic approach
considering how buildings may contribute something substantial
to their place while also adding to the general culture of
architecture. Architecture speaks to us directly through space,
form, material, image, detail and touches us on many levels

Curtis often sits on juries, and has organised exhibitions on

subjects as diverse as Australian Aboriginal spear-throwers
and the sketchbooks of Le Corbusier (shown at Harvard,
NY, Ahmedabad and Chandigarh). He contributes
regularly to critical journals, such as the Architectural
Review and El Croquis (with numbers on Alvaro Siza,
Rafael Moneo, Tadao Ando, Miralles/Pinos, RCR
Arquitectes etc). Curtis exhibits and publishes his own
paintings (Mental Landscapes, Circulo, Madrid, 2002) and
photographs (Structures of Light, Alvar Aalto Museum,
2007). Among his numerous awards: the CICA Critic's
Award (1985), a National Honors Society Gold Medal in
Architecture and Allied Arts, USA (1999) and a Medal of
the Museum of Finnish Architecture (2006). Curtis is
currently preparing an exhibit of his own work Abstraction
and Light for the Alhambra, Granada (2015) and another
of his photographs of Le Corbusiers architecture for the
CMAV, Toulouse (2015).

mentally and physically. That is why it is so important to base

judgements on the experience of works themselves and to grasp
the structures of intention behind them. Interesting works of
architecture do not reduce themselves to positions or to
theoretical slogans. They are not there to fulfil academic agendas.
Many works that are proposed as radical innovations fade away
because they are transient, without formal presence or underlying
content. One must maintain the long historical view.

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Photo credit: William J R Curtis, 1988

Photo credit: William J R Curtis, 1977

A sublime sense of order; the Parthenon, Athens, 5th century BC

The refinement of a type over the centuries; a lota in an Indian village

RW: So the best works of a period transcend the passing

agendas of that period? Isnt that paradoxical?

the natural and its relation to the artificial. This has led to a rich
range of work embracing both architecture and the larger scale
of landscape architecture. Take the question of ornament. This
has led to grotesque decoration in some cases, formal
enrichment in others.

WJRC: This has been true throughout history. Profound works fit
into time in complex ways. I think of this in terms of three
wavelengths. First, the building addresses issues of its time.
Second, it extends a tradition, in this case the tradition of modern
architecture which is anything but monolithic. Third, it may rely
upon long and slow wave motion in the history of forms, even
engaging with issues basic to the medium of architecture itself. It
is the level of the longue dure, which can take us back over
centuries or engage with certain archetypal situations.
RW: Does this mean that one should abandon any hope
of discerning common ground shared by architects of the
recent past?
WJRC: There may not be any single dominant trend in recent
architecture but there are some shared territories of
investigation. There are problems that are in the air partly
because society and the condition of the world require that they
be solved, partly because the discipline of architecture itself is
searching for generic solutions. Take for example the question of


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RW: Architecture the world over is becoming the same. What

happened to regional identities? Will the loss of vernacular and
traditional styles not impoverish culture?
WJRC: With rapid modernisation and urbanisation there is a loss
of contact with the rural base, and even this base is being
uprooted by fluctuations of globalized markets in agricultural
produce. But there is no going back. The contemporary architect
seeking identity (always a nebulous notion) is obliged to
reinvent local traditions, usually through a screen of national or
regional myths of continuity or roots. He or she is also part of
the international culture whether he likes it or not. In the present
interconnected world one can no longer speak of centres and
peripheries. Centres happen to be wherever there are potent
buildings. Neither simplistic narrative of globalization nor
reductivist notions of regionalism can explain the complexity of
the present.

Photo credit: William J R Curtis, 1984

The intensification of perception: jali screen, the Mosque, Fatehpur
Sikri, 16th century

Influences jump from place to place in a series of

transformations across frontiers.
Actually it has been like this for a long time. In the 1940s,
Aalto reformulated the Finnish landscape through the lens of
Greek ruins and the Mediterranean world. Siza rediscovered the
southern European patio by bouncing off Aaltos Nordic
interpretations of courtyards. Balkrishna Doshi, when addressing
issues of Indian identity in Sangath thirty years ago, drew
upon inspirations as varied as Buddhist chaitya halls, mud
vernacular buildings, southern Indian temple spaces, Le
Corbusiers vaulted prototypes and Frank Lloyd Wright. And so it
goes on. You need to go somewhere else in order to discover
where you are.
RW: You sometimes refer to the notion of a dynamic modern
tradition in which central principles are extended
and transformed.
WJRC: Yes there are constant rereadings of basic spatial
concepts of early modernism such as Le Corbusiers free plan
and his earlier Dom-ino skeleton. The Dom-ino crops up all
over the place in the work of Rem Koolhaas and Dutch work
but in Japanese architecture too: Toyo Itos Sendai
Mediatheque (1998) was both a transformation and a critique
of the skeleton principle. As for the Corbusian free plan,
every generation comes back to it, think of Niemeyer for
example, who transformed it in response to the sensuality of
the Brazilian tropical landscape. In the recent past the concept
has been transformed yet again in the delicate stilts and open
lateral spaces of SANAAs buildings (which also echo
traditional Japanese frame architecture).

Photo credit: William J R Curtis, 1997

RW: With rapid urbanisation in emerging Asian countries like

India and China, increasingly the trend is to go vertical
competing with Manhattan and Chicago skylines how do you
view this skyscraper worship?

Meditation and the sense of infinity: Zen 'dry sea' garden, Kyoto,
15th century


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WJRC: A lot of this has to do with land speculation and the

amassing of international capital. Social concerns such as
public space are low on the agenda. The basic patterns of the
skyscraper as a type are repeated lazily across the board: a
skeleton, core of vertical circulation all wrapped in a
decorative and environmentally inefficient skin. Usually there
is some attempt at making an image, often caricatural. The
result is a species of urban anarchy with the making of an
environmental disaster.
In 1992, I was in Shanghai as part of a delegation invited
by the Mayor in order to reflect upon the proposals for
Shanghai Pudong where hundreds of towers were envisaged.
After three days I stood up and asked; what was a culture
5,000 years old doing imitating all the errors we have made in
the West? Many were shocked but a former high ranking

person came to me and said Mr Curtis, China should regard

you as a real friend as you are the only person to tell the
truth. There are some efforts at reformulating the tall building
to make it respond better to climate. I think for example of the
tower designed by Carme Pinos near Guadalajara, Mexico,
which opens up a concrete core for the siphoning of air,
attaches a steel structure, then handles the faades as
adjustable wooden screens.

WJRC: Roughly twenty five years ago I published a piece with

the title Contemporary Transformations of Modern
Architecture which compared the situation to a delta with
several streams. In contrast to post modernism, I suggested
that there were more lines of continuity than was usually
admitted. In the 3rd edition of Modern Architecture since
1900 (1996) I developed the approach still further in chapters
dealing with the 1980s and early 1990s, in effect drawing up
a critical map of the time. In contrast to fashions then current,
I suggested that the truly seminal works of the time were
buildings such as the Koshino House by Tadao Ando, the
Sangath studio in Ahmedabad by Balkrishna Doshi, the
Presidential Guest House in Cartagena de Indias, Colombia, by
Rogelio Salmona, or the Spiller House by Frank Gehry. All are
uncategorisable, all rich in meaning.

Photo credit: William J R Curtis, 1981

RW: To recapitulate: you reject any monolithic description of

the recent past. You insist upon the importance of individual
works. You suggest some communities of concern. But what
about the overall shape of recent history?

Revelation through reflection: water in the Madrasa of Ben Youssef,

Marrakech, 15th century

RW: So how do you characterise contemporary situation? Can

one speak of coherent national cultures of architecture?
WJRC: Today the situation is a bit more like an archipelago at
the mouth of an estuary but one still needs to sidestep the
merely fashionable and focus upon buildings that really
crystallize the situation. There are many different cultures of
architecture and while they may owe something to national
cultures, it does not make much sense to box them in that
way. Take the case of Japan which for several generations has
been involved with cross breeding ideas from international
modern architecture with internal readings of different phases
of Japanese tradition. Architects of the generation of Kengo
Kuma and SANAA are keeping this process going but in new
ways. But it makes no sense to refer to Japanese architecture
as a distinct entity.
Or take the case of Ireland where work of high quality has
been produced by several firms such as Tuomey and
ODonnell or Grafton Architects (Shelley McNamara and
Yvonne Farrell). Some claim that one can recognise an Irish
contemporary building through its rigour of construction and
its Kahnian echoes, but this is too vague. Graftons Bocconi


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

University Building (2005) in Milan is surely one of the

outstanding works of the times with its bold structure, its
subtle yet monumental presence in the cityscape. Unlike
many of their contemporaries, Grafton read the context of the
city - again a case of recent work of quality that does not fit
the fashionable discourses.
Or take the case of Finland. A younger generation is
emerging that is open to recent developments internationally
but attempts to maintain a critical distance from fast track
globalized image production. There are substructures to do
with landscape, light, materiality, fragmentation, nature, etc,
which are inherited almost unconsciously from earlier
generations going back to Aalto and beyond. Does this mean
that there is a specifically Finnish architecture? Rather there
may be a specifically Finnish way of occupying the space of
international modern architecture. Years ago the Mexican
painter Rufino Tamayo suggested that Art is universal, the
accent is local. I quite like this formulation.
RW: You have been involved with Mexican architecture,

Photo credit: William J R Curtis, 1992

The realm of shadows; Louis Kahn, Salk Institute, La Jolla, California

ancient and modern for many years.

WJRC: The absorption of international modernism in Mexico
has been accompanied by deep readings of such basic elements
as the platform and the patio from the pre-Columbian ruins.
We find this in one form in the work of Luis Barragan in the
1950s, and in another in the work of Teodoro Gonzalez de
Leon a generation later, one of the few living architects to have
mastered modern monumentality. The process continues in
recent public buildings such as the Vasconcelos Library (2004)
in Mexico City by Alberto Kalach. The exterior pyramidal form
is rather forced but the interiors with the steel stacks
suspended from the roof as hovering platforms lit from above is
surely one of the most impressive public interiors anywhere in
recent years. In Mexico the continuities are almost unconscious
from generation to generation.
RW: What now about the so called third world, countries
such as India or Bangladesh about which you wrote a great
deal in the 1980s when you visited south Asia regularly?

WJRC: In India the generation of Balkrishna Doshi, Charles

Correa, Raj Rewal and Anant Raje had the opportunity and the
problem of struggling with very powerful prototypes: Le
Corbusiers and Louis Kahns buildings in Ahmedabad and Le
Corbusiers in Chandigarh. In the 1970s primary lessons of
these examples were fused with a reading of Indian tradition
at the level of underlying spatial organisation. The results are
there to see in remarkable works of the 1980s such as Doshis
Sangath studio in Ahmedabad or Rewals National Institute of
Immunology near Delhi which is like an abstraction of a
traditional city with courtyards and terraces.
India is now in another phase open to globalized
capitalism and the ground rules have shifted. The most
interesting recent buildings seem less concerned with issues of
cultural representation than with sensitization to site and
climate. I think of the Palmyra House on the coast near
Bombay designed by Studio Mumbai (Bijoy Jain) which
responds to the tropical vegetation and micro-climate of a
coconut grove in two delicately placed oblongs shaded by
grilles of wood. There are echoes in Jains work of Bawa and
Barragan, of the vernacular, and of Zumthor, but adjusted to
particular natural and siting conditions.
RW: Twenty five years ago in Dhaka you spoke publicly about
Kahns magisterial Assembly Building and posed the questions:
is this a foreign imposition? Or is it a filter through which to
activate the past?
WJRC: Yes, I suggested debts to several periods of centralised
architecture, including Mogul tombs, Sultanate Mosques and
Buddhist stupas and viharas. This disturbed quite a lot of
people at the time but now they see it! I have just been looking
at photographs of the Chandgaon Mosque in Chittagong
designed in 2008 by the Bangladesh architect Kashef
Chowdhury. This seems to have made a convincing synthesis of
a Kahnian language and geometry, and the typology of
traditional mosques in the region. In effect Kahn has helped
architects of this generation in Bangladesh to undertake a sort
of cultural excavation into the substrata of the past including
not just Islamic but also Buddhist traditions in the former
Bengal. This is what I mean by the slower wave motions of
history and by the impact of a seminal work on followers.
RW: What is your take on China?
WJRC: As mentioned, I have only been to mainland China
once and that was over twenty years ago. In the incredible
boom of recent construction, one feels that there has been a
massive failure to reflect upon the creation of decent modern
cities - a mindless reproduction of inappropriate foreign
models from lumpy towers to Disney-like theme park
reproductions of Versailles and Venice. However there are

ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4


being produced elsewhere, notably in places like Bordeaux,

Toulouse or Nice. I have also developed a dialogue with
different regions of Spain over the years. There are many lines
of continuity. The best Spanish work responds to place,
topography, tradition and climate without brandishing the
slogans of sustainable architecture.

Photo credit: William J R Curtis, 2014

RW: You seem to have several styles of criticism ranging from

cool analyses to quite polemical texts, such as your attacks on
the excesses of the star system.

Light and space as perennial materials of architecture: Le Corbusier,

the Mill owners Association Building, Ahmedabad

signs of a critical reaction in a country where criticism is not

much tolerated. Desperately needed is a critical and reflective
culture of architecture which among other things could
engage with the problem of transforming spatial, social and
climatic lessons from the past. Those who have seen the
Ningbo History Museum (2008) by Wang Shu claim that this
building investigates just such issues, but I have not seen it, so
reserve judgement.
RW: It is evident that your critical map takes into account a
vast variety of recent architecture around the world including
buildings that do not fit any obvious category.
WJRC: Take France where I live. This is organized on a
centralized Jacobin model which is reflected in the power and
fashion structure of the architectural profession which is very
concentrated on Paris. But some of the finest recent work is


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

WJRC: The tone and method change to some degree according

to the subject. There is a polemical mode, the attack on
things that seem wrong, false or corrupt. Here the medium is
often the daily or weekly press, even the web. There have
been catastrophic projects such as Peter Eisenman's City of
Culture in Galicia which have to be exposed for what they are,
empty exercises in computer generated shape-making. The
article I did on this, The Illusion of Plans, was first published
in the Architectural Review in October 2010, but then went
rapidly around the world in several languages. With projects
like this part of the problem is the gulf between pretentious
theorising, especially in the gaga world of North American
academia, and the disastrous architectural reality. In these
cases so called theory (usually a recycled diet of French postmodern writings) is used as a tool of obfuscation.
RW: These strong critical stances sometimes put you in conflict
with institutions which consider themselves to be authorities
on architecture?
WJRC: Yes of course. Behind the Eisenman project were
problematic political machinations in Galicia and these needed
exposing. It is one of the duties of a free press in a democracy
to question public decisions and the manoeuvres of power.
The critic has to be prepared to challenge the institutions of so
called cultural authority, to remain vigilant and to keep a
distance from the cliques of sycophants and useful idiots. In
my view one of the roles of the critic is also to safeguard
patrimony, modern or ancient. That is what I did when
criticising Holls horrendous addition to Mackintoshs
masterpiece, the Glasgow School of Art, or Pianos extension
to Ronchamp which has undermined Le Corbusiers sublime
chapel. That is what I am also doing when defending modern
masterpieces in India!!!
RW: Which brings us back to Chandigarh and Ahmedabad in
particular: what role can the press have in helping to safeguard
this modern patrimony?
WJRC: The article I published in the Architectural Review a
few months back with the title Nothing is Sacred: Threats to

Modern Masterpieces in India has had an impact. It

encouraged the Times of India, Chandigarh edition, to publish
two main pieces on my views. My Conversation with an
Unknown Indian (published in the September issue of A+D,
amplifies the argument in a less polemical style. DOCOMOMO
and other websites have picked up on my criticisms, as have
the Architectural Record in New York and Archiscopie in Paris.
Now that the Indian elections are out the way it is possible
that some of these issues will come to the attention of
politicians and the legal establishment. For as stated earlier,
what really has to be thought through is the question of
appropriate legislation for defining and protecting modern
architectural heritage in India.
RW: What about texts that express enthusiasm for recent
WJRC: When it comes to texts on recent architecture I remain
true to my own critical precepts, always taking the time to
visit buildings, writing only after a period of reflection. As
said earlier, for me there are several modes of criticism. The
most agreeable is the analysis and explanation of works that I
think are positive contributions, such as the Catalan architects
RCRs subterranean winery at Bell-Lloc, the subject of a little
monograph I wrote called La estructura de las sombras/The
Structure of Shadows (2009), or their just completed Muse
Soulages in Rodez on which I have just published a balanced
article in Architectural Review, September issue.
Sometimes they are works so modest as to be almost
invisible such as the Water Organ at Zadar (2004), Croatia by
Nikola Basic and others, which unites a sort of theatre of steps
for the enjoyment of the sea with music generated by the
rhythm of the waves pushing air through subterranean pipes.
My analysis of SANAAs Louvre Lens in the Architectural
Review a-year-and-a-half ago assessed the architectural pros
and cons in a balanced way while also taking into account the
geographical and political context.
RW: But you have always hesitated to be associated
with movements?
WJRC: I have always thought the idea of critics founding
movements to be ridiculous. I do not consider the role of the
critic to be that of a promoter of groups or tendencies. It is
buildings of quality that point the way, not isms, and the
critic comes along afterwards hopefully casting some light.
Another mode of criticism is that of the reflective
monograph. Over the years I have published several of them
in El Croquis on figures as diverse as Miralles/Pinos, Moneo,
Siza, Navarro Baldeweg, Ando, and Herzog & de Meuron
that is before H & de M's recent descent into fast track
superficial iconic architecture. These essays and interviews


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

balance up form, function, structure, ideas, and maintain

historical perspective. They are the opposite of polemical.
They are analytical and carefully measured, based upon
evidence of the buildings themselves. But I try to maintain
perspective for example I still think Igualada Cemetery
(1985) is Miralle/Pinos's best work, and I still think that Ando
has not matched the Koshino House (1981). In fact these
writings are a sort of preliminary version of a history of
recent architecture.
RW: Do you consider yourself to be more a critic or more
a historian?
WJRC: Primarily I am a historian but with a strong
commitment to recognising and encouraging quality in
contemporary architecture. These two activities reinforce one
another, and are in turn reinforced by my work as a painter
and a photographer. I do feel it is essential to use ones eyes,
really to see and experience architecture, for without that
there is nothing. My photographs are another way of
grasping and evoking the presence of architecture but
through a degree of abstraction. They are a lot about
architectural fundamentals which transcend time and place
such as light and space, and they include images from many
parts of the world and many periods. An exhibition of my
work a few years back in the Alvar Aalto Museum in Finland
was called simply Structures of Light. My Mental Landscape
paintings and drawings also distil experience in lyrical,
abstract forms, and react to natural phenomena. They evoke a
meditative space.
When it comes to criticism, I am interested in
understanding the present in the light of the past and vice
versa: remember my model of the three wave lengths. I am
forever digging into the work of modern architects and
considering how they transformed the past. We have been
discussing a time span of a decade or two but this is
absolutely nothing in the history of architecture. When I need
to be reminded of this, I just cast my mind back to the great
works in history, such as the Theatre at Epidaurus, the stepped
platforms of Uxmal, the Stupa at Sanchi, the Temple at
Ranakpur or the magical spaces of Fatehpur Sikri. Timeless
works like these hold out lessons for every age. In France I
live close to the caves of Pech Merle with their astonishing
rock paintings created thirty millennia before our era. These
subterranean creations oblige us to reflect upon the long wave
motions of time.
Copyright: William J R Curtis
Rajnish Wattas is the former principal of Chandigarh College of Architecture,
currently distinguished professor at Surya School of Architecture. He is a well
known writer, architectural critic who has written numerous publications.

The Art Enclave @ INDEX


9 10 11 12 October, 2014
Bandra Kurla Complex
Commemorating the 26th edition of
Indias largest B2B interiors tradeshow,
INDEX 2014 welcomes a striking array
of suppliers from distinct segments :
furniture, furnishings, decorative lighting
and artifacts; kitchen and appliances;
office and contract furniture and fixtures;
intermediates for interiors such as
flooring, doors, shutters, laminate, paint,
architectural and building materials ;
architectural hardware, spanning an
impressive 300,000 square foot area. Over
the years Index Fairs has clung tenaciously
to its guiding principle of being a focused
B2B event, with a clear focus to the
architect, designer and builder community,
and overall goal of creating a true platform
for the industry, promising to wow the
industry with its signature business +
design initiatives.


several leading Malaysian brands such as Eastern

Everhome International (M) Sdn Bhd, Hupsheng
Furniture Industries Sdn Bhd, Isella Sofa Design Sdn
Bhd, Marcoco Furniture Industries Sdn Bhd,
Seni Daya Woods Industries (M) Sdn Bhd, Tamarind
Furniture Sdn Bhd, Tropical I Sdn Bhd, Jin Sheng
Furniture Industry Sdn Bhd, Hup Chong Furniture
Sdn Bhd, and Feng Yuan Industries Sdn Bhd; and
companies under the leadership of Taiwan Furniture
Manufacturers Association, Acme Group, Bear Asia
Co Ltd, and Sun Chain Co. Ltd. The China group of
manufacturers includes the Dongguan Furniture
Group, Yabo Hotel Furniture Co. Ltd, Anji County
Shengxing Office Furniture Co Ltd, and Foshan
Sanshui Zhengyu Aluminium Profile and Product Co
Ltd. Other key brands include Alessanderx Srl (Italy),
Cignini Arredamenti (Italy), Silver Metals Pvt Ltd
(Dubai), and Cilek Mobilya (Turkey).

In line with the INDEX vision of providing

an integrated platform for interiors and
design, UBM Index Fairs announces
a long-term collaboration with Aura
Art Development Pvt Ltd, to host The
Art Enclave at INDEX 2014. Featuring
the works (paintings, sculptures and
photographs) of upcoming and celebrated
artists and civil solutions (framing, glass
casing, restoration, insurance) relevant
to the art industry, the foundation of this
art-focused initiative is to showcase the
best of Indian and international art, offer
a Business + Design platform for artists,
and provide an opportunity to connect
with the architect, builder, designer and
hospitality community. The invitation to
this stands open for art galleries, artists
(painters / sculptors / photographers) and
designers alike!

Global Participants @INDEX 2014

Always a key feature of the Index Fairs is
the large array of international products,
the 2014 edition is the proud host to
companies from Italy, Spain, Portugal,
Turkey, the United Kingdom, Malaysia,
China, Taiwan and the United Arab
Emirates. INDEX 2014 presents its visitors
with the opportunity to network with
delegates from various national pavilions.
This includes the UK Pavilion hosted by
British Contract Furnishing Association
(Residential and Contract Furniture
Group); Italian Furniture Group, furniture
pavilion from the Association of Wood
and Furniture Industries of Portugal; the
Malaysian Timber Council incorporating

Initiatives @INDEX 2014

Hosted Buyer Program

In keeping with the Index reputation

of creating strong events to create
meaningful industry interactions, Index
Fairs hosts events for the kitchen industry
with the successful Cooking Up a Storm,
the lighting design industry with Light
Up ! and in a new initiative, creates a
powerful forum for the hospitality industry
with an exclusive partnership with the
Hospitality Purchasing Managers Forum of
India (HPMF), UBM Index forges a network
with purchase managers from across the
country and the suppliers who serve them.

Setting the trend for interiors industry, the 26th

edition of INDEX FAIRS, Mumbai is proud to
announce its Exclusive Hosted Buyer Program. This
initiative is by-invitation only for the crme de la
crme of the architect-builder-designer and trade
community across the country. Also included in
this program are key specifiers from the hospitality
and retail industry (corporate, hotels, purchase
management consultants) and government bodies
Special Focus :
invested in interiors, architecture and design. This
Delhi Designers @INDEX
initiative is developed in cooperation with hospitality
partner: Grand Hyatt and airline partner: Indigo.
Sita Nanda (Hacienda)
Ashish Anand (Living Spaces)
Nitin Kohli (Furncraft De Collage)



Intelligent Building Envelope

Solar Skin & Operable Stoma

uilding physics and the

improvement of energy
efficiency associated with it, is a
very important area of engineering
research and development in the world
today, with 40 percent of the worlds
carbon being consumed in maintaining
a comfortable interior environment [1].
During the past few decades, buildings
have been imposed to progressively
extend their functionality. Increasingly
varying and complex demands related
to user comfort, energy and cost
efficiency have led to an extensive use
of building automation systems to
create satisfactory indoor climate. The
expanding application of control
technology in this context has led to
the emergence of the term Intelligent
Building Envelope (IBE) to describe a
built form that can meet such demands
[2]. An IBE adapts itself to its
environment by means of perception,
reasoning and action. This innate
adaptiveness enables it to cope with
new situations and solve problems that
arise in its interaction with the
environment [3]. Despite their
endeavour towards a green image,
their high-tech act or so-called
intelligence are suspected to use more
energy than they save in operation [2].
On the other hand, the annual solar
energy received at the envelope
surfaces of a building is in the same


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

order as the energy needed for

operating the building, even at higher
latitudes. With better utilisation of this
energy, one should potentially be able
to create buildings that are selfsufficient with energy [3].
New generations of high-performance
envelopes have contributed to the
emergence of sophisticated assemblies
combining real-time environmental
response, advanced materials, dynamic
automation with embedded
microprocessors, wireless sensors and
actuators, and design-for-manufacture
techniques. This practice has
fundamentally transformed the way in
which architects approach building
design with a shift in emphasis from
form to performance and structure to
envelope. In the realm of highperformance buildings, the envelope has
become the primary site of innovative
research and development [4].
Until now, architects, engineers and
scientists interested in architecture have
focused on the morphological imitations
of nature. Sometimes, natural forms,
including biological forms have inspired
our constructions. Few famous examples
depicting such forms are - Bionic tower
[5], Gardens by the Bay [6] and Lotus
Temple [7]. In order to produce
genuinely sustainable architecture, it
needs to be part of the biosphere. Bioinspired design is relevant to a wide

array of applications including places

(communities, landscapes, buildings and
rooms), furnishings, tools and
technologies, etc.[8] Therefore, there is a
need of understanding the biological
roots of architecture and urbanism. It is
anticipated that this change in
architecture with Intelligent Building
Envelopes is going to take place in future
as a part of our design process. The
proposed IBE concept here is an attempt
to accomplish these objectives through
its application in Intelligent Building
System and sustainable development.
Proposed Concept for Intelligent
Building Envelope
The proposed IBE concept is highly
inspired by the biological phenomenon
of climate adaptive natural plant and
animal species. Vasodilation and
vasoconstriction body mechanisms in
response to ambient temperature are
other related biological processes. The
proposed IBE responds to the changing
environmental conditions outside and
physical requirements inside, in the
same way as outer petals and inner
stigma of a flower [9]. Similarly, the
innovative role of operable stoma in
controlling micro-climate is inspired by
the role of stomata in photosynthesis
[10]. In this way, the botany and
architecture can be integrated together
as shown in Fig 1.



Fig 1 Proposed Concept of Botecture (Botany+Architecture) for Intelligent Building Envelope

Design Development
The proposed IBE has been
conceptualised for double-storeyed
medium size residential building of
300sq m plot area, with 40 percent
ground coverage to be built at CSIRCBRI campus. The pyramid form of the
IBE with slope angle of 60 from
vertical is ideal to utilise maximum
solar efficiency of rotatable solar panels
for Roorkee [11] and will also be
suitable for the entire North India with
composite climate. The slope angle
could be determined using solar angle
calculator or stereographic sun-path
diagram for specific location. The
proposed IBE is designed with truss

The proposed IBE model is designed

using single element double function
concept to save installation as well as
running cost to make it more costeffective. The structural design and
other details against wind and seismic
loads are being worked out to make
the building economically viable as
well as structurally safe. As the PV
panels are slide able and rotatable, the
running power requirement will be
automatically fulfilled by the solar
power generated by these PV panels.
Solar Efficiency
A major problem with the solar
energy usage nowadays is the lack of

solar efficiency of PV panels. One of the

key reasons for this is the dust deposition
over panel surface and lack of
maintenance. It is observed that the
efficiency of PV system gets reduced by
dust deposition. As a result of
experiment, it is observed that generally
5 to 10 g/m of sand, red soil, calcium
carbonate or ash deposition reduce PV
voltage by 4 %, 6%, 5% and 25 %
respectively [12]. So to overcome this
problem, self-cleaning mechanism is
proposed for the solar skin. Another
reason for lesser solar efficiency is the
solar radiations capturing angle.
Automatic solar tracking systems (using
light intensity sensing) may boost

Venturi effect of wind slits

formed by rotation of
western panels towards

openings in
N-E to gain
sufficient morning
light & diffused
daylight light

frame structure to provide high

structural stability for large spans, fitted
with solar skin and operable stoma.
The climate responsive design is
proposed considering the sun-path and
wind direction. The orientation and
movement of IBE is planned
strategically to get the advantage of
favorable conditions and protection
against excessive heat and cold as
shown in Fig 2.

rotatable Solar
panels towards South
& Vertically rotable
panels in West for
increasing solar

Hot air
blockage in
summers &
cold air
blockage in
winters through
closed stoma

Fig 2 Bio-climatic design for an Intelligent Building Envelope

ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4


management etc. [14]. For improving

IEQ and thermal comfort, active and
passive design strategies, such as shading
effect and Venturi effect are applied.
Proposed model favours dual layer check
of IEQ through micro-climate; for more
control over indoor-outdoor environment
quality with approximately 5-7 air
changes/hour in semi-open condition.
There is a choice of natural environment

consistently the conversion efficiency of a

PV panel [13]. Hence, the solar tracking
system is opted for the proposed
intelligent solar skin. The panels in west
are vertically rotatable towards south to
increase the solar availability period.
Similarly, the panels in south are
rotatable from 36 to 84 from vertical
as per monthly requirements shown in
Table-1 and Fig 3 [11].

generating approximately 30,000 kWh

of power annually, which is about triple
as compared to annual energy demand
of a conventional household. Thus, the
surplus energy will be sold to electricity
grid, such that the additional investment
can be recovered quickly. The proposed
solar skin concept provides 65% more
energy production capacity than a
conventional solar roof system.

Table 1. Optimum solar angle available

Table 2. Comparison of conventional solar roof v/s proposed plus-energy model using IBE

Optimum solar angle available


Comparison of conventional solar roof v/s

proposed plus-energy model using IBE



Ground coverage or roof area @ 40%

120 m



Solar roof capacity @ 0.093 kWh per m ,

11.16 kWh



if install conventionally on roof top



Proposed surface area of solar skin















Plot area

300 m

200 m

(120 m in south+80 m in west)

Solar skin capacity @ 0.093 kWh per m

18.6 kWh

facing south & west in pyramid form

Annual energy production from 270 sunny days,

30,000 kWh approx.

8 hrs./day @ 80% efficiency in south & 60% in west

Annual energy saving through passive cooling & ventilation 1,500 kWh approx.
(assumption of annually 5 kWh per m)

Autumn or

Indoor Environment Quality (IEQ)

The process of achieving indoor
environment quality is a continual one
throughout the design, construction,
commissioning and facilities

assimilation as well as artificial

environment creation. In this way, one
can either enjoy the essence of nature
and/or self-controlled environment
whenever required, as shown in Fig.4

Fig 3 Rotation angle of PV panels

Plus-Energy Model
To fulfill the energy demands of an
intelligent building in future and to
reduce the pay-back period for the
additional investment, a plus-energy
model of building is proposed. The 18.6
kWh capacity of solar skin is capable of


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN


Fig 4 Climate responsive

design concept for an
Intelligent Building


Mechanism and Materials for IBE

The mechanism is based upon single
element-double function design that
means the components in active mode
provide help in passive cooling and
ventilation. For example, when a PV
panel rotates as per solar direction, it
also provides shading effect according
to solar movement and at the same
time creates wind slits for Venturi
effect. Solar tracking system offers an
optimum cost/performance ratio [15].
Similarly the EPDM gasket (ethylene
propylene diene monomer i.e. M-class
rubber) provided at the base of each
slide able PV panel helps in shock
resistance as well as panel cleaning
while sliding, as shown in Fig 5.
Likewise in case of operable stoma,
the aluminium frame acts as a pipeline
for filling glycol water in PBE
(Propylene-based Elastomer) balloon, as
shown in Fig 6. To reduce the weight
and operation cost of intelligent
building envelope, light weight
polymeric solar panels with aluminium
frame are preferred.

flow iii) optical/visual control and iv)

electricity generation [16].
Payback - Period Study
The complete installation of such an
IBE will result in an additional cost of
Rs 6150 per sq m. But, still this much
cost will be compensated back through
plus-energy model. The payback period
shall be about 5 to 6 years.

storey buildings. Likewise we can use

the concept for large communities to
develop smart and sustainable
settlements and cities. The concept is
recommended for developing new
intelligent buildings. The concept
imparts a large scope of research in
building automation and material
science in near future. Apart from the
tangible benefits mentioned above,

[Calculated as per Table 3]

Calculation of payback period

Cost of solar skin @ Rs 50/W (in range of Rs. 30 to 60/W)

Rs 9,30,000

Cost of operable stoma cover @ Rs 1500 per sq m

Rs 3,00,000

Additional cost of frame & other equipment @ 50% extra

Rs 6,15,000

Net installation cost

Rs 18,45,000

Annual energy demand per household @ Rs 4.5/unit

Rs 40,500

for 9000 kWh

Cost of surplus energy generated by solar skin per year

Rs 3,15,000

@ Rs M15/unit for 21000 kWh

Net saving per year

Rs 3,55,500

Pay-back period

5 Yrs 2 months

Service shaft cum light

Ball & socket joint for rotation (23
to 70, optimum @ 43)
Light weight polymeric Solar panel
Wind slit with Venturi effect
Guide channel for sliding
EPDM gasket for shock resistance &
panel cleaning while sliding
Fig 5 Concept of Operable Solar Skin


Glass brick/ Transparent


Aluminium frame cum pipe line for fluid

Pressure Nozzle
Truss frame cum balloon holder

there are many intangible benefits also

in terms of clean energy generation
with reduced pollution for
environmental sustainability; selfsufficient energy generation with
payback guaranties for economical
sustainability; and transfer of surplus
energy for social sustainability. For
recommending the concept as a green
building retrofit strategy for existing
buildings, further research is needed to
work out in detail by studying different
building typologies in various climates.

Glycol water filled PBE/EPVC balloon

Triangular balloon with thick exposed
surface & thin extruding surface to
maintain pressure while expanding
Fig 6 Conceptual Detail of Operable Stoma

In this way, the proposed IBE

collectively covers all four physical
domains useful for a climate adaptive
building shell i) thermal comfort ii) air


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

The proposed conceptual IBE model
is designed for a double-storey
building but can also be used for multi-

Acknowledgement: The study performed

in this article forms a part of research
being carried out at CSIR- CBRI, Roorkee,
and is funded by CSIR, New Delhi. The
authors wish to thank Prof S K
Bhattacharyya, director, and other experts
for their guidance and suggestions. The
paper is published with the permission of
director, CSIR- CBRI, Roorkee.

Ashok Kumar is a senior principal

scientist and head, Architecture &
Planning Group, working at CSIR-CBRI
in Roorkee. He is presently doing
research on green retrofit of buildings.
Sumeet Kumar is a research intern at
CSIR-CBRI in Roorkee, researching on
intelligent and green buildings.
Astha Chaudhary is a project fellow at
CSIR-CBRI in Roorkee, researching on
green buildings and pre-fab housing.
1. M Beevor Smart Building Envelopes.
Department of Engineering,
University of Cambridge, pp.
3-15 (2010)
2. Annemie Wyckmans. Intelligent
Building Envelopes - Architectural
Concept & Applications for
Daylighting Quality. Norwegian
University of Science and Technology;
pp. 1-15 (2005)
3. yvind Aschehoug, Inger Andresen,
Tommy Kleiven, Annemie Wyckmans.
Intelligent Building Envelopes Fad or Future?
4. Kathy Velikov and Geoffrey Thn.
Responsive Building Envelopes:
Characteristics and Evolving

Paradigms. pp. 75-92

5. Hedayat Shahbazi, Farnaz Montazer.
Recognition Nature Related Concepts
in Bionic Architecture and Their
Effects on Contemporary Architecture.
International Conference on
Nanotechnology and Biosensors. pp.
106-110, IPCBEE vol.25 (2011)
6. Meredith Davey, Patrick Bellew,
Kenneth Er, Andy Kwek, Johnny Lim.
Gardens by the Bay: High
performance through design
optimisation and integration.
Intelligent Buildings International 2.
pp. - 140157 (2010)
7. R Mirzaei. Organic Architecture Means
for Sustainability Goals. Islamic Azad
University, Birjand, Iran. pp.
1-12 (2013)
8. Judith H Heerwagen. Bio-Inspired
Design: What Can We Learn from
Nature? (2003)
9. The Structure of a Flower
Information Sheet, adapted from
SAPS (2002)
10. Anne Vatn, Dominique C
Bergmann. Mechanisms of stomatal
development: an evolutionary view.
EvoDevo. pp. 1-8 (2012)
11. Solar Angle Calculator, Solar

Electricity Handbook, 2013 Edition

12. Tiberiu Tudorache, Liviu Kreindler.
Design of a Solar Tracker System
for PV Power Plants. Acta
Polytechnica Hungarica. pp. 23-38,
Vol 7, No 1 (2010)
13. Hussein A Kazem, Tamer Khatib, K.
Sopian, Frank Buttinger, Wilfried
Elmenreich, Ahmed Said Albusaidi.
Effect of Dust Deposition on the
Performance of Multi-Crystalline
Photovoltaic Modules Based on
Experimental Measurements.
International Journal of Renewable
Energy Research. pp. 851-853, Vol
3, No 4 (2013).
14. Derek J Clements-Croome. Intelligent
buildings and Indoor Air Quality,
Healthy buildings. pp.
1-6 (2000)
15. Tiberiu Tudorache, Liviu Kreindler.
Design of a Solar Tracker System
for PV Power Plants. Acta
Polytechnica Hungarica, pp. 23-39,
Vol 7, No 1(2010)
16. Roel Loonen. Climate adaptive
building shells: What we can
Simulate? M.Sc.- Thesis, Technische
Universiteit Eindhoven,
pp. 27-31 (2010)

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Exploring Design

Product Design
Architecture+Design brings across some
innovative products that speak volumes with their
out-of-the-box forms, designs and multi-utilities

Bo om Ca binet
The cabinet is made of maple and maple
veneer. The dimensions of the cabinet are

Designer: Judson Beaumont, Canada

Squidd y
It is a side table made out of
alder wood that can be
customised to suit the client's
needs. The tables are available in
different sizes and designs,
including a rectangular Squiddy.

Designer: Studiowood Collective Team,

New Delhi

Multi-level A ccent Tab le

Jenga Cabinet

The table is made of mildsteel pipe, rubberwood board

and mirror. The slender lines of this metal structure hold a
mirror at the bottom reflecting the screen-printed opengrain rubber wood.

The storage cabinet is made of commercial board and white

ash veneer. It creates a three-dimensional illusion with its
colours, thicknesses and forms.

Designer: Isaac Krauss, Los Angeles

Oct op u s Table
A functional art sculpture is made
completely of casted and carved
silicon bronze. The eyes are hand
blown glass and detailed with gold
leaf. sIt weighs nearly 225kg with a
height of 73cm.

ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4


Designer: Fredrik Frg

and Emma Marga Blanche,

Woo d La yer Armc hair

Employing wood tailoring technique, the armchair
is made by stitching together thick plywood layer
on layer. The sewing creates a topographical map
with an organic pattern that resembles the growth
of wood.

Designer: Freyja Sewell, London

Hu sh
Hush is an enclosed space that provides a personal
retreat in the midst of a busy hotel, airport, office
or library. The internal padding is made from
recycled wool fibers.


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

Designer: Lisa Hinderdael

and Dara Huang, New York City

Ra indrop Chande li er T he Pour

This light installation is created in the shape of chandelier which
imitates raindrops. Each raindrop is hand blown by artisans and
intricately engineered to house the lighting strategy for the chandelier.

Designer: Alex Davis,

New Delhi

O pu n t ia
Made of stainless steel, the
dimensions of the sculpture


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

Lo g Cent re Table
The table is made of stainless steel 304 grade with
collapsible legs measuring 10cm (height). The
dimensions of the table are 40cmx120cmx120cm.



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Designer: Shiva ji, New Delhi

Mo on Li ght
The light displays the waxing and waning
effects of moon in a controlled manner, the
crescent of lightning can be adjusted and a
soft diffused lighting can be enjoyed.

Designer: Tom Dixon, London

Mirror B all Tr ipod Sta nd

Made of stainless steel, the stand has a
capacity for up to 6 mirror balls. These
balls are available in three sizes25cm,
40cm and 50cm.


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

Bathroom Solutions
GROHE has introduced The Authentic Range to help create a personal
space of relaxation within ones home. The range comprises
GROHE Kensington, Bridgeford, Somerset and Grandera
collections. Continuing with the tradition of majestic opulence and
binding it seamlessly with contemporary technology, GROHE turns the
spotlight on personal space blending the traditional with modern aesthetics.

Contemporary Lighting
Vizion Lights Pvt Ltd has launched a new product titled the Glide
system. The system is a contemporary luminaire specially designed
for retail spaces having both options with indirect and direct
lighting. Indirect lighting is possible with flourescent T5 or LED and
Tunable White LED. Direct accent lighting is possible with
conventional lamp and LED modules with different lumen package.
For more information, visit:

Kitchen Solutions
arttdinox, one of the premium brands of tableware and home dcor
products, has launched bespoke Modular Kitchens in complete recyclable
green stainless steel. These kitchens have been designed and manufactured
keeping in mind the cooking style of global Indian customers, which
essentially comprises wet and oily cooking. They come in three distinct
styles in the modular kitchen space, including contemporary, linear and
minimal. They are available in many colours and design patterns.

Modular Kitchens
Grandeur Interiors has launched a German kitchen brand
Ballerina Kchen for the Indian market. The brand is
available in various finisheslaser bound high pressure
laminates and digitally printed glass and melamine, among
others. Rohin Ramchandani, director of Grandeur Interiors,
said, We offer our customers several top European brands to
choose from and we are extremely delighted to add Ballerina
to this range of premium brands. Additionally, they offer 100
percent customisation service for the consumers.
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O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

Digital Wall Tiles
Kajaria has launched a series of 40x80cm digital
glazed vitrified tiles titled The Collection for walls
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high definition and innovative prints created by
retina imaging technology. It comes with various
finishes, such as Matt, Lappato, Stone and
Polished. Lappato finish radiates the edginess of
urban chic. Roto Matt finish gives a satin-like feel.
Stone finish exudes abrasion resistance and stain
proof characteristics.

Bathroom Faucets
Newform has launched its Royale
Collection of faucets. The collection
is a perfect blend of Italian lineage
and Indian sensibility. Made of brass
and gold polish using Physical
Vapour Disposition (PVD) process,
the collection comprises three
products, such as Royale Collection,
Royale Classique and Antea. They
are available in numerous finishes,
including chrome, gold, brushed
bronze, shiny chrome with swarovski
and chrome gold with swarovski.
For further information,

Wall Tiles

NITCO has launched a collection of wall tiles titled The Royale Treasure. The
collection takes its cue from natural elements as well as from various day-to-day
essentials. To create true to life surfaces, NITCO uses six colour prism printing HD
Digital technology that provides an impression of colours and textures like stone
and wood bringing the minutest details alive. They are available in five variants,
including Marvelous Marble, Stunning Stone, Tempting Textiles, Lavish Leather
and Gorgeous Geometry.
To know more, log on:

Laminate Wooden Flooring

NOTION has come up with new
laminate wooden flooring collection.
The collection has protective layers
which protects from UV rays that can
discolour flooring materials. The wear
layer protects it from stains and
smudges due to dirt. The range
resembles natural wood and is hygienic
and easy to clean. It is ideal for any
functional dry kitchens, childrens
rooms, living areas and study rooms.
To know more,


O c t o b e r 2 0 1 4 ARCHITECTURE+DESIGN

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