Truck Driver’s Village, at Chitradurga, by Rohan Chavan Architects.

Truck Driver's Village, at Chitradurga, by Rohan Chavan Architects. 3

India’s trade and transportation rely heavily on trucks and truck drivers, a profession that has seen a rapid decline in numbers, due to negligible amenities and excessive responsibilities. At present,  truck drivers have little to no restrooms or pit stops during long-distance journeys. In 1982 for every 1000 trucks there were 1300 drivers available, this number has reduced to 750 by 2012 and predicted to be 450 by 2022. In other words, 50% of the country’s trucks remain stranded on road due to a shortage of truck drivers. We need truck drivers to make goods available to the doorstep of the shop. If this trend continues cities will fall short of food and groceries.


The Truck Drivers Village is a project designed for the truck drivers community, it sits on a 2.5-acre site. The building occupies only 7% of the site area and the remaining area is open space, parking and fuel station. Conceptually the facilities are arranged as a series of courts and verandas referencing the courtyard houses of the south. The courts are equipped with facilities to eat, to sleep, to hang out and to recreate. These facilities are supported with ATM, first aid, drinking water, toilets and bathing facilities, washing and drying clothes, salon, a convenience store and a workshop for trucks.
The landscape in the courtyard is rendered with huge boulders and discrete vegetation to create a micro-climate and to reference the landscape of Chitradurga.

Under the Sun – Residential Development for Fortius Infra, by RSP Design Consultants

RSP Design Consultants-Fortius Infra
RSP Design Consultants-Fortius InfraUnder the Sun – Residential Development Fortius Infra, by RSP Design Consultants

Under the Sun is a residential development set in the lush landscapes of Devanahalli, nestling amidst a myriad mix of 2650 fully-grown fruit yielding trees alongside a protected lakebed. The design sensitively responds to the climate, topography and context. Character of the street and existing vegetation dictates the form and massing, while the design is expressed in a distinctly contemporary language. Each plot is bounded by trees on all sides and within, reminiscent of a lush tropical eco-retreat.

Every villa is designed with clean modern lines juxtaposed on a natural setting. The entrance foyer is naturally ventilated and provides panoramic views of the orchard setting. The design places special emphasis on family spaces to support interaction between the family members. The concept of outdoors flowing indoors is animated by positioning all the principal room around courtyards. Large windows and roof-lights flood the heart of the house with natural light, with sliding-folding doors further extending the internal spaces into the garden. Courtyards and orchard trees are set along the circulation spine to enhance wide avenues and lung spaces within the residence. Functional façade finishes allow for a delightful interplay of hues and textures. Further, the interiors reflect understated luxury, exclusivity, meticulous attention to details and the use of carefully handpicked material and fitments.

Under the Sun - Residential Development for Fortius Infra, by RSP Design Consultants 24

Retaining all the existing trees on site, Under the Sun is designed to achieve LEED Platinum certificate. Key design highlights include extensive cross ventilation, enhanced daylighting and enhanced fresh air ventilation. The upper level of the units faces north, east & west, maximizing on daylight harvest, while the terrace and landscaped extensions let one enjoy the orchard setting. The masterplan utilizes an existing perennial well for the collection of water run-off. Every unit is fitted with water-supply and replenishment system to minimize wastage of water and to utilize rainwater harvesting systems, while processed wastewater from the sewage treatment plant supports irrigation needs for all the landscaping.


Orphanage for Maher Trust in Satara, by Studio PPBA

Orphanage for Maher Trust in Satara

Orphanage for Maher Trust in SataraMaher trust aims to build the orphanage (ashram) in Satara, Maharashtra, India  to accommodate street children. They could stay,learn,eat and get the quality of life which otherwise they would have been deprived of.  Maher ashram was conceptualized how people will approach to the building and how we can create a unique experience through visual connection between each function inside and outside, to create a gallery of activity.

Orphanage for Maher Trust in SataraOur intention was to respect past, be present in future with keeping eyes open for  future. Placing the central courtyard as Bindu or a primordial space imbued with  existential meaning, was to both respect the tradition of vernacular language as well as maintaining a balance with climatological forces. We have tried to maintain an attunement with the surroundings, striking a harmonious chord by employing locally available technology and material wherever possible.

This project was envisioned with one simple idea to create space that would stimulate exchange of ideas while forging connections between inside and outside. We intended to adopt a courtyard for an urban context that combines the spirit of  traditional houses yet responds to the contemporary values & issues.  So, all the functional activities were planned around the central courtyard that would facilitate the light and ventilation.

Throughout the design process, we have planned four big monumental double brick walls outside which envelop the building. The walls are placed on the east-west side to avoid the heat gain.

These walls are rising towards the sky and stand like bastions acting sculpturous in its own way. Creating a sense of a place which can provide a monumental, dignified, and symbolic setting in city’s urban fabric.

Orphanage for Maher Trust in Satara, by Studio PPBA 68
Exploded View

The section was generated with careful considerations of different activities being played out at multiple levels. We enter the building through the ceremonial courtyard, where the building reveals itself to us. The curvilinear colored walls accentuates the spatiality while harmoniously carving out a place of its own .

The ground floor has been designed as a space with multitudes of functions in mind, with a play area for the children where one skip/hop into interesting levels. The space is intended to bring out the child in oneself.

The plan is developed on 750mm grid which is derived to accommodate the entire building components. This grid pattern generates an iterative mould which ennobles a regularity.

Pergolas at different levels perform three distinct roles. They provide the much needed shades in the parched settings. Additionally they create a fluid display of shadows which is ever-changing with every passing moment of the sun. At the end, they maintain a visual connection throughout the two blocks which imparts a distinct identity to the project.

Inspired from the traditional Indian culture , we wanted this project to be a ‘HOME’ to these little children which would act as a container of both emotions and memories. It was meant to foster the dreams and reverie, innovations and playfulness.

Project Facts:

Architects: studioPPBA
Location:41,Rambaug colony,411038-Pune ,Maharashtra,India.
Category: Public Building
Project name: MAHER ASHRAM
Lead Architects: Pankaj Bhagwatkar, Pallavi Arwade
Design Team: Shreyas Walimbe, Shubham Joshi, Devki Bohara
Clients: Maher Trust, Pune
Structural Engineer : Er.Shreeram Kulkarni
Contractor : Mr.Sanjay Padwal
Services: Sandesh Giri, Santosh Pawar, Mahesh Rewale
Gross Built Area: 1121.00 SQ.M
Project Year: 2018-2019
Text : Kunal Rakshit, Pallavi Arwade
Photo credits: Pallavi Arwade & Onil Shah

Studio Panache, a boutique condominium at Jaipur, by m a architects

Studio Panache, a boutique condominium at Jaipur, by m a architects 72

Studio Panache, a boutique condominium at Jaipur, by m a architects 74Studio Panache is a boutique condominium located at Jagatpura area, Jaipur. Jagatpura, having the international airport in close proximity, is developing at a fast pace as compared to other industrial areas of the city.

Studio Panache, a boutique condominium at Jaipur, by m a architects 76The whole idea behind having this project in close vicinity with airport was to create a living space for young working as well as business professionals, hence the planning has been done keeping in mind the everyday needs and requirements of the young professionals. It offers a versatile range of 386 modular apartments with multiple living options in Studio, 1 BHK & 2 BHK modules whose features also includes convertible spaces, suspended decks, 9’-6” floor height & concealed storage spaces. Designed on the lines of a service apartment Panache offers facilities such as laundry, cafeteria, business center and almost 80% closed car parking to all the dwellers in 1 and 2 bhk units.

Floor Plans

Studio Panache, a boutique condominium at Jaipur, by m a architects 82

Architecture of Studio Panache speaks for itself. Regular grid design, sensible modules with shared plumbing and electrical shafts, clear lines demarcating service and dwelling areas, restricting services to the inner face while dwelling spaces to exterior, hence opening an opportunity in play of box windows, Juliette balconies and suspended decks creating interesting facade yet respecting modular grid system, at the same time the color scheme in white and gray completes the modern and contemporary facade.

Other than modularity, Studio Panache also features landscaped podium having variety of public activities, accessed through a unique “staircase-ramp”. The two towers are physically linked through effective landscaping and visually tied together through the swimming pool on the podium level. The landscape is done on levels with a water channel flowing throughout the area in the center. The whole area becomes interactive community space for the residents with different kinds of spaces developed on different levels.

Design Team: Sharad Maithel, Puneet Dua, Amit Singhal, Mahendra
Photograph credits: Aadit Basu, Nishtha, Ranu

76 South Avenue by SHROFFLEoN Architecture and Interior Studio, Mumbai

Raheja 76 Avenue by SHROFFLEoN Architecture and Design Studio

Raheja 76 Avenue by SHROFFLEoN Architecture and Design Studio

76 South Avenue is a luxury residential building in Bandra on a plot of 5317sq.ft.having one 3 bedroom apartment of 1420sq.ft.per floor, with the top two floors being a duplex penthouse. The apartment orients towards the west, with the living room and the two main bedrooms overlooking into the direction of the Arabian Sea. The terrace houses an infinity pool, along with an intimate entertainment zone.

The primary material employed is a stark palette of black and gray zinc, punctuated by warmer panels of parklex.  Constructed in layers at different planes, the outermost – the black layer visually structures the façade, with setback horizontal bands in gray and vertical bands in parklex fragmenting the controlled format, resulting in an irregular façade. The four planes altogether work in unison and take up a total width of 5 inches.

The design intent was to disguise the repetitive and standardized nature of the program within the envelope, and allow for a structure with a variated skin.

ITC Mud Fort Housing at Bengaluru, by CnT Architects

ITC Mudfort, bengaluru, CnT Architects

ITC Mudfort, bengaluru, CnT ArchitectsProject was to design a multi-dwelling for corporate managers on a site spread across 1.9 acres with large existing trees on periphery, and low-rise dense residential development in context.

With a total of 57 units across twelve floors, the project seeks to create a landscape haven for the residents by providing refuge from the surrounding traffic and concrete jungle. Vehicle movement is restricted onto the front of the site and a large community space is carved out onto its back, surrounded by lush trees onto which all the common amenities spill out.

The cluster and unit layout is designed to maximize the penetration of day light into the different parts of the home, and give unrestricted views from its full-length balconies, also allowing for comfortable cross ventilation.

The project has adhered to strict environment, health and safety standards along with achieving a LEED platinum and GRIHA 5-star rating. The project has also received the NDTV 2017 Award as the most Environmental Friendly Residential Space.

Unique Features / Interesting Aspects :

  • Sustainable residential project which has achieved multiple credential for being Green.|
    – GRIHA 5-Star rated
    – LEED Platinum rated
    – The Most Environmental Friendly Residential space – NDTV Property Awards 2017
  • Only residential project which has achieved LEED platinum and GRIHA 5 star rating.
  • All amenities are placed at the ground floor directly engaging the landscape with many open and semi open public spaces. All large existing trees on the periphery of the site as preserved to enhance the experience.
  • All the units are opening on three sides for light and ventilation. All spaces are designed with cross ventilations.
  • Large balconies are designed to create better social space and relation to natural elements while in the unit.


Project Facts:

Project Location : Bangalore
Architects’ Names : Mehul Patel, Prem Chandavarkar
Name of the Firm : CnT Architects
Location of the firm : Bangalore
Project Status : Completed – August 2017
Photographer – Anand Jaju

Site Area : 1.9 Acres
Built-up area: 19,950 sq mt
Configuration : 57 Residential Units, Amenities, Basement Car Parking

Design Team and Consultants

Principals : Mehul Patel, Prem Chandavarkar
Design Team : Rohan Shetty, Deepika Upadhyaya, Pradipto Benerjee

Structure : ISA structure Studios
MEP Design: AECOM India Pvt Ltd
Landscape : Oikos
Civil Contractor: B L Kashyap & Sons

Green credentials:
GRIHA 5-Star rated
LEED Platinum rated
The Most Environmental Friendly Residential space – NDTV Property Awards 2017

Mahagun Moderne at NOIDA, by GPMA

Mahagun Moderne - GPM Architects and Planners
Mahagun Moderne at NOIDA, by GPMA 98

Awarded as ‘Environment friendly project – residential’ at the Realty Plus Excellence Awards and the ‘Integrated Township of North’ at the Estate Summit & Awards, Mahagun Moderne is a perfect amalgamation of avant-garde architecture and modern day technology. Located in sector-78, Noida, it is an upmarket residence in Noida that enjoys good connectivity to prominent locations of the city. It is in close proximity to the commercial hub of sector-18, Noida and the Noida City Centre metro station and is well connected to NH 24 and Yamuna Expressway.

The brief of the project was to deliver a luxurious lifestyle to the end-user with unique timeless signature style and impeccable craftsmanship. The implemented design creates intricate community spaces incorporating essential amenities for a healthy living. It houses a fully equipped clubhouse, swimming pool and spaces for sports activities. The master plan is spread across an area of 25 acres of land, involving a development of approx. 2700 units. The project offers a product mix of 2, 3 and 4 BHK apartments comprising of high rise apartments, duplex apartments, independent floors and penthouses for every kind of end-user. An iconic tower Marvella is dedicated to luxurious 5BHK units.

The designs morphology has evolved from the traditional concept and well-knit transition within the functional spaces. The transition from public spaces to semi-private and private is premeditated at both macro and micro level. An inviting avenue leads the residents to a central roundabout which acts as a circulation indicator as well as an amphitheater. This which functions as a focal point of the overall project and emphasises the importance of social spaces. A network of streets leads from the peripheral vehicular road to the central greens. The streets act as spill-over spaces for the residents.

The residential units are extensions of the central linear green space that works as a community space for residents of all age groups. The plots are aligned on the East-West axis ensuring maximum daylight in all habitable areas. Residential units are positioned to enhance cross ventilation which in turn reduces dependency on the HVAC system. The Wall window ration and orientation of the built form amplify natural daylighting. Phase 1 of the project includes Ground + 4 story structure. The low-rise building blocks minimize the structural cost adding to the cost-effectiveness. The elevation is designed with pergolas jails and other shading devices over fenestrations that complement the façade holistically and are highly cost effective and renders a distinct character to the project. Juxtaposed volumes create intricate shadow effects and also increase airflow, in turn, bringing about the cooling effect at a macro level. The flamboyant landscape design accommodates both soft and hard landscaping with gazebos, level changing mounds, Meditation Park, lush green lawns and an aquatic garden. A badminton court, jogging track, basketball court, skating ring are integrated with the landscape design.

Key sustainable features

Mahagun Moderne at NOIDA, by GPMA 124

The development is planned to ensure maximum efficiency of workflow and quality control. Measures are taken to minimize air pollution during and post construction phases to attain zero discharge within the complex. Post construction waste management techniques have also been planned.

The use of locally available materials adds to the cost effectiveness. Parking spaces are soft paved to maximize groundwater absorption and rainwater harvesting systems reduce the dependency on fresh water requirements. The runoff water of building terraces, paved areas and landscape areas are channelized to the rainwater harvesting structures which are designed as per the peak intensity of rainfall to suffice maximum surface runoff, avoiding flooding.

Color coded waste disposal bins have been located at prominent locations in the complex. The biodegradable and non-biodegradable waste is planned to be collected and stored at earmarked places. This waste will further be sent to the disposal sites.

Project Facts:

Project Name: Mahagun Moderne
Architectural Group: GPM Architects & Planners, New Delhi
Design Team: Rajeev Singhal, Khesal Akhtar, Gian P. Mathur
Client: M/s Mahagun Developers
Project Location: Sector 78, Noida, Uttar Pradesh
Project Plot Area: 25 Acres
Project Built Up Area: 
Project Type: Residential
Project Status: Completed 

Reinventing Modern Living – Tata Housing ‘Serein’ at Thane, by Edifice Consultants

Reinventing Modern Living - Tata Housing ‘Serein’ at Thane, by Edifice Consultants 138

Reinventing Modern Living - Tata Housing ‘Serein’ at Thane, by Edifice Consultants 140Tata Housing ‘Serein’ is an upcoming premium residential project by Tata Housing Development Company, designed by Edifice Consultants Pvt Ltd. Sensitivity to human needs is the basis of this project, which is located in the city of Thane, popular for its lake-dotted landscape and close proximity to the bustling metropolis of Mumbai. The site is situated on Pokhran Road No. 2, flanked on the northern and eastern sides by residential developments and overlooking the Yeoor hills to the west. Situated close to the Upvan Lake, the neighbourhood has emerged as a sought-after residential precinct in recent times, especially given the upkeep of infrastructure in the area and excellent connectivity with the city.

The first phase of the project is proposed to have about 658 apartments encased within three towers in a 7.5 acre parcel of land – with a mix of 1-, 2- and 3-bedroom residences and duplexes – accompanied by amenities such as sports facilities, children’s play area, a swimming pool, a community hall and an open air theatre, distributed equitably among the dwellers.

Having tested several iterations of urban block typology as part of the design process, the final form adopts an isolated block typology with four towers – congruent with the master plan development – creating a self-contained complex. The built form of the towers possesses a distinct aesthetic appeal that is sure to gain landmark status within the town, characterized by multiple-height terraces arranged in a staggered geometric manner along a central vertical axis. Some of these terraces are private decks to the dwelling units, while some act as common social spaces as well as necessary fire escape routes and refuge areas within the tower.

Reinventing Modern Living - Tata Housing ‘Serein’ at Thane, by Edifice Consultants 142
Site Plan

With a common podium between the towers, the living spaces have been hoisted above the site level; the podium has been devoted entirely to parking and service areas, freeing up the open-to-sky upper level for community activities. Vehicular access has been relegated to the very periphery of the site with a vast central green court – essentially, an urban park – at the heart of the upper level. This urban park connects all the towers at the base and forms the fulcrum of the neighbourhood; an exclusively pedestrian zone. With the towers arranged around the urban park, this central green space effectively becomes the courtyard of the housing complex.

Reinventing Modern Living - Tata Housing ‘Serein’ at Thane, by Edifice Consultants 144
Sectional Elevation

The towers feature clear glass facades to maximise daylight penetration to all habitable spaces, and prioritizes natural ventilation for each dwelling unit. The interior spaces are also highly flexible, to allow for customization by the individual. The complex provides a luxurious yet sustainable lifestyle to the occupants, by creating climate-responsive homes. In an urban culture where the concept of habitat identity is becoming obsolete – with rows upon rows of identical towers with little floor-to-floor variation in built form dominating the skyline – the distinctive voids within the built envelope of Tata Housing ‘Serein’ allow residents to locate their homes even from a distance. The project is set to be completed by 2021, and is sure to become a hit with homeowners and investors alike.

Design Team: Uday Goswami, Manoj Choudhury, Subhrendu Das, Akhil Laddha, Debashree Turel, Parag Mistry

Construction Team: Uday Goswami, Shradha Ram, Dipika Pawar, Umakant Patil, Alam Parande




Text and Images: Uneven


For a constantly developing city like Vadodara, it was important that, we as architects strive our best in producing buildings that can be at par to the city’s pride and development.

Located in the Vadodara’s newly developing area, Kalali, this project is targeted to be the state’s first high end project providing the users with newest technologies to ease their everyday routine and bring the best of both world’s luxury + nature living. It addresses the client’s need in making a building that stands as an iconic landmark for the city. Continuous diligence in making a grand building came after some real research on the need of users, discussions with clients and the team. The form started to shape well after a process of about six months of constant refinement and research, the form is a perfect fusion of state of the art sculpting and functionality, while trying to redefine the meaning of architecture in its pure form. The structure does perfect justice to its name as it plays with curves and visual imaginary. The project stands bold and has redefined all possible norms that an ultra-luxurious residential space could be


This project has a unique form of housing resort homes. The site covers a large area of 2.5 lakh sq. ft. with the tower sitting right at the entrance, covering only 15% of the total area, overlooking the entire campus. The site also accommodates a beautiful artificial lake covering the central footprint of the site, individual cottages owned by the house holders are sited along the periphery facing the lake. This provides the individuals with a leisurely time to unwind and relax on the lake developed. With restricted vehicular movement most of the property can only be accessed by foot and helps maintain a healthy environment.


The unique form and alignment of the building is developed by considering various factors like the sun movement, wind direction in mind. The form of the basic slab plates and the structural form is inspired by the profile of a professional mic and reflects the fluidity of the lake and landscape around the building. The plan is inspired from fluttering of the wings of a butterfly such that it offers a peninsular views of the tactfully designed landscape and beyond, for each of the apartment.


The tower has huge spaces that lets one experience the splendour right from the entry. The reception at the entrance also acts as a help desk. The play of double height spaces that occur at the amenities placed on the floor above, adds to the drama of the interior, as the form does for the exterior. The pool, designed within the building footprint faces the lake, which creates a sense of infinity pool as it makes an infinite visual connection towards the lake.

 Distinct care has been taken in designing the individual units that it has a proper ventilation benefits. A good interplay of spaces is created in the internal planning of units, as most of the rooms get major openings lined along the surface while a few common spaces have a warm enclosure. 
Moreover, systems working on natural energies are integrated like the solar water heater and rain water harvesting plants. The sewage treatment plant is also provided in order to release environmentally safe waste.


As one drives through the entrance you reach the foyer of the building. This floor has a help desk /reception and lounge spaces. A floor above has a massive recreational zone inclusive of a gym, spa, cafe and a serene infinity pool facing the lake.

In an attempt to give maximum advantage and considering the sun movement and wind direction the layout of the individual unit derived is an attempt to give maximum view and ventilation for almost all the usable spaces within with all the services facing the west.

The internal spaces are all well connected and are rather exaggerated in dimension, enough to cater to all the requirements of a modern upper class family.

All the four bedrooms are well equipped with individual walk-in closets and large bathrooms.

The large formal living area opens to a deck that in turn runs all around the entire house. Connected to the living area is the dinning, family space which further opens to a deck with a splash pool tucked cleverly between 2 bedrooms giving a sense of privacy as well as openness.

The form being so dynamic, all challenges are resolved as to the traditional building construction techniques. Innovations in building construction techniques are thus explored even more.


KALPATARU SPARKLE at Mumbai by GA design

KALPATARU SPARKLE at Mumbai by GA design
KALPATARU SPARKLE at Mumbai by GA design

Located near the Bandra-Kurla Complex, Mumbai, are three multi-storeyed, landmark towers of Kalpataru Sparkle. Kalpataru Sparkle’s vantage point near Bandra- Kurla Complex offers a unique edge in living in the heart of Mumbai’s rapidly developing commercial district, while enjoying great connectivity to every part of the city. Whether its Bandra Kurla Complex or Bandra Worli Sea link or International Airport or Domestic Airport, all these locations are less than 20 min from Kalpataru Sparkle.

Apart from offering unique location advantage, Kalpataru Sparkle features luxury residences. Housing the finest amenities such as a unique clubhouse with world class gymnasium, large swimming pool and toddlers’ pool with spacious pool decks, relaxing spa with steam and massage room, multi-function party lounge, landscaped garden with children’s play area designed by international architects, and a peaceful alcove, Kalpataru Sparkle offers lavish lifestyle to the residents. A redevelopment project in which a harmonious amalgamation of different spatial configurations is achieved, the project incorporates expansive 3, 4 and 5.5 bedroom residences and the various components of the sale wing, rehab wing etc.

KALPATARU SPARKLE at Mumbai by GA design

Planned with a contemporary, modernist approach to residential housing, a coherent and unified aesthetic is accomplished. At 18 storeys, the towers offer an uninterrupted view of the Bandra highway to the residents along with many lifestyle amenities, green spaces and parking. The fully-equipped clubhouse with its wrap-around form compliments the dynamics of the building design. A cantilevered gymnasium overlooking the pool forms the highlight of the health club. To endow an experience of quality luxury living, every apartment has decks overlooking the garden and the swimming pool on the south side and an MIG cricket club on the north side. Care has been taken to have three lifts for the four apartments on each floor, reducing the wait time to approximately 43.9 secs.  The homes are equipped with features such as Scalable home automation systems.

As one enters the residential complex, one can instantly connect with the beautiful water cascade on the left. The podium curves to form a grand triple height entry and a driveway leading to the entrance lobbies, making it a distinguished feature amongst the urban skyline of the region. As one moves up to the eco deck level, a luxurious double-height entry portal welcomes the visitor, facilitating an unforgettable arrival experience for the landscape area. The façade of the podium is a laser-cut aluminum screen in a fluidic wave pattern which forms a remarkable contrast with the geometric design of the building elevation. Random stepped-form balconies highlight the geometry of the building and form an interesting feature of façade design. These balconies are held together by a solid white frame which is a prominent visual element. Floor to ceiling windows and open sided balconies with seamless glass railings extend the interior space and flood it with light and also provide undisturbed view to the residents.

Cleverly chosen basic hues of grey and white strongly support the line and form of the building, delivering a hint of rich cultural tranquility to the resident’s daily experience. The layering of colours & the building design aims at a sense of whiteness and cleanliness with an interplay of light & shadow. The juxtaposition of the colours, the frame and the crown visually increases the vertical impact of the towers.

The landscape with surrounding planters and water features provide an interesting focal point whilst the soft sound of flowing water relaxes one upon entering the building complex. The recreational area is set on a landscape deck overlooking BKC. Despite a limited plot area, a large green cover has been provided along with Ramp access and toilets in the common areas for the differently abled & elderly. Green principles are adopted by means of sewage treatment plant, rainwater harvesting tanks, Pre-certified IGBC Platinum rating, LEED certification, LED lighting etc.

A seamlessly integrated palette of architectural elements and materials finish the modern luxury development perfectly. The visual aesthetics of the building cannot be missed driving over the Bandra highway – a prominent solid white frame and a crown that is lit at night, transforming it into a spectacular structure.

Rohan Avriti at Bengaluru by Collage Architecture Studio

Rohan Avriti at Bengaluru by Collage Architecture Studio
Rohan Avriti at Bengaluru by Collage Architecture Studio

An abode of wholesome living, Rohan Avriti is an apartment complex like no other. The project strives to revive the lost concept of community living where the user becomes a part of the bigger scheme of things. This sanctuary, a breath of fresh air, is a neighbourhood carved out in an urban setting where people come together to celebrate life in all its glory.

Rohan Avriti at Bengaluru by Collage Architecture Studio

From the very first step into the site, as the user moves through the design, he is greeted with ever transforming elements that awaken the senses and create a unique setting of moods altogether. His journey is through the intriguing series of frames scaled down to human proportions, into the sudden explosion of openness of the plaza, over the canvas of vivid colours painted by nature, and finally into the grand opulence of the luxurious house itself with its sleek contemporary feel.



Earthquake Resistant Self-Help Traditional House at Nepal by ALLEYA AND ASSOCIATES

Earthquake Resistant Self-Help Traditional House at Nepal by ALLEYA AND ASSOCIATES
Earthquake Resistant Self-Help Traditional House at Nepal by ALLEYA AND ASSOCIATES
Lack of structural ties in walls and roofs led to the collapse of most houses

Preamble : April – May 2015

The Nepal earthquake and its aftershocks during April – May 2015 resulted in widespread destruction of lives and property. With the fragile hill road infrastructure badly affected across districts, transportation of relief, goods and services were restricted, making the re-construction effort a daunting task, especially in rural areas far from urban centers.

Rural habitats in remote areas – with their own distinct identities derived form local traditions and materials – form an integral part of Nepal’s economy based on nature and culture tourism. The village of Kaule in Nuwakot District (N 27.91; E 085.36; A 1591), for example, mostly use locally available stone, mud mortar, and timber to build their houses. Due to the lack of sufficient seismic resistant measures used in construction, most of these were damaged in the earthquake.

Initial response: June 2015

In the aftermath of the earthquake, Nepal was flooded with diverse proposals for reconstruction. These ranged from houses made burnt bricks, paper rolls, sandbags, to steel and RCC pre-fabricated structures. While most of these proposals were structurally sound, they ignored an important community based reconstruction resource – use of traditional skills and materials.

A need was felt for a design to mirror the unique cultural identity the of Tamang community – expressed aesthetically and fluently in the design of their habitat for ages. Moreover, re-using salvaged material for environmental, energy, and economic reasons was also needed. Equally important was to engage the community in the re-building process, providing a source of livelihood for a community with its back against the wall in the aftermath of the earthquake.

Survey and study: Sept- Oct 2015

A survey was conducted in the villages of Kaule and Bhangeri over the months of Sept-Oct 2015. Bamboo and other building materials were sourced, and a site for the construction of a prototype was identified. A village committee was formed for an orientation and training programme for treatment and use of bamboo, mud and stone in construction using seismic-resistant concepts. The design allowed use of stone masonry up till lintel level on the ground floor, a bamboo frame with independent foundations that extended up to a lightweight upper floor (attic) with a bamboo frame, mud plastered wattle and daub walls, and a bamboo frame with pre-coated Corrugated G.I. Sheets as roof.

Skills Training: November 2015

A training programme on techniques used in ‘The Kaule Prototype’ was designed for 12-15 people. More than 60 people signed up! The two week long training session brought architects, craft persons, villagers together to explore treatment and structural joints in bamboo, as well as seismic resistant construction details in stone masonry, timber construction and mud finishes. The design of the Prototype was finalized during this period and submitted, along with structural calculations based on Nepal Building Codes, to DUDBC (the Department of Urban Design and Building Construction), Nepal. This was subsequently approved and published in the DUDBC Design Catalogue Volume II.

Prototype Design – Plans

The Kaule prototype in its context

The Team

Principal architect and team leader:  Ashish Sharan Lal
Associates:  Areen Attari, Manu Narendran
Structural Engineers:  Minesh Ratna Tamrakar,  Bipin Gautam
Technical Guidance:  Prof. P. N. Maskey
Project Mentor: Vivek Rawal
Community RepresentatiiveSantaman Tamang
Funding Support:  South Col Trekking Grou
Construction Manager: Shashi Tamang
Master Craftsperson: Ramesh Ji, Tribuvan Ji
The  Kaule and Bhageri Community


Alleya and Associates is a multidisciplinary design practice in Kolkata. The firm has dealt with a wide range of projects – a 100 acre township in West Bengal, institutional buildings, corporate interiors, archival exhibits, adaptive re-use of historic buildings – among others.

A selection of our projects may be viewed at the following web address:

More details on the The Kaule Prototype project can be viewed here:


 Ashish Sharan Lal Architect, Proprietor

  • Arch, School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi, 1988
  • Registered Architect, Council of Architecture, India – CA/88/11882
  • Registered Conservation Architect, Kolkata Municipal Corporation
  • Registered Conservation Architect, West Bengal Heritage Commission

Nilina Deb Lal Conservation Architect

  • Arch, School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi, 1991
  • Masters in Conservation of Historic Buildings, University of York, 2003
  • PhD at candidate at the University of Edinburgh, Department of Architectural History
  • Registered Architect, Council of Architecture – CA/91/13761
  • Registered Conservation Architect, Kolkata Municipal Corporation
  • Registered Conservation Architect, West Bengal Heritage Commission

UDAAN, low cost mass housing project at Mumbai by Sameep Padora and Associates

UDAAN at Mumbai by Sameep Padora and Associates- Architect
UDAAN at Mumbai by Sameep Padora and Associates- Architect

Escalating land prices in Mumbai is forcing out the families that serve the privileged classes. The domestic help, drivers, sweepers, peons etc are the invisible cogs that daily ensure smooth running of the city. Currently they are being dis-housed from their decades old housing, since this has caught the eye of developers; and they are forced to relocate further from their primary sources of income. Currently, this segment forms 50-60 % of the urban population of Mumbai. The commute between home and work thus becomes a critical factor in site selection. If this isn’t handled adequately (eg, the commute is a 2hr+ journey each way), the new homes get rented out and the people return to squat closer to their places of work.

The issue at hand is to provide:

  1. well connected
  2. low-cost
  3. mass housing
  4. matching growing aspirations

for the large service sector population. This should also have the capacity to grow incrementally as these new settlements grow in popularity.

Thus, for site selection, connectivity to public transport networks becomes a critical factor. If such land parcels, which have clear

records, can be identified, procured and ear marked, the entire project can develop in tandem with the MRTS network.

The Solution:

The solution is multi-pronged-

A. Site- Well connected, adequately sized to upscale

B. Execution/Technology- Precast concrete modules/wet pods serving as structural elements

But most critically,

C. Design- a modular, but non-repetitive scheme, with a mix of 1 Room Kitchen (RK) and 1 Bedroom Kitchen (BHK), which can be combined to form permutations suiting the fluid requirements of users, with a minimum area of 300sq.ft as mandated.

Community spaces like a ration shop, crèche, a gym, a gathering space that have been built into the design to foster a sense of community.

The Site:

A 19770 plot is within 10 minutes walking distance from Bhivpuri station, Karjat. This is on the Central railway route between Neral and Karjat. It is also connected to NH4 and has road links to both Panvel/Navi Mumbai and Badlapur/Thane.

The FSI for this area is 1.2

The Design:

The approach explores the flexibility available in clever repetition of a module. The project, being precast pods, can be executed with speed and allows for a number of units that can be configured to suit individual requirements of space for individual families over time.

UDAAN at Mumbai by Sameep Padora and Associates- Architect

At the same time, rather than consolidating the 10% amenity into the de-facto club house disconnected from daily use, the design integrated it as a series of dispersed common social programs throughout the building. Since residents would pass by these on a regular day to day basis, the chance of these being maintained well were also much higher.

Being a low-rise building the users experience a closer connection to the ground.

Total BUA proposed: 19080

Total Units proposed (assuming 300 sq.ft): 522

Phase wise allocation:

Phase 1: 255

Phase 2: 267

UDAAN at Mumbai by Sameep Padora and Associates- Architect

Unit Design– Many iterations to the 300 sq.ft unit finally led to a module that served the requirements of a low income, yet upwardly mobile family.

Learning from the research into indigenous housing typologies, for migrant workers in Mumbai, led to four variant designs based on the same grid. Each satisfied the requirements of a particular type of family.

  1. 1 RK
  2. 1 BHK
  3. Mezzanine Unit
  4. Mixed Unit

All the unit types are clubbed together in the same building, allowing a mix of user groups and creating a richer social fabric. All units have an identical width of 3.6mt (approx 12ft) which is generated by the Wet Pod requirements 3.6×1.5m.

Climatic considerations:

Based on extensive studies of housing typologies in Mumbai, with its humid climate, the most effective way to ensure comfort conditions is by providing cross ventilation as far as possible. The design addresses this by using the staggered corridors to have cross ventilation through each unit and vertically ventilate the community/corridor areas by staggering the corridors and generating a stack effect cooling through the sloping roof over the circulation zone.

UDAAN at Mumbai by Sameep Padora and Associates- Architect


The idea of scalability works at many levels here. There is already preset 4 typologies that can be selected depending on the current needs of each family, using the same module width of 3.6m

The individual unit is scalable by joining adjacent units when the family scales up in size and economics. The precast building technology ensures that the building phases can be scaled up with minimum disruption to the existing structure.

Feasibility and Speed of Construction:

The design is modular. The Wet Pods also act as structural, precast, loadbearing modules between which the slabs are spanned and eliminate the need for extra columns and beams. Since part of the building module is fabricated off-site and simply put into place on site, the actual time taken for construction is much less than a conventional RCC framed one both in terms of time and labour involved. Different techniques of precast technology were explored before settling for the load bearing, precast pod system. Through this method, we are able to build upto G+4 in 21 days as opposed to casting one slab in 21 days using conventional RCC frame construction.

The precast method of construction also has the potential for production at an industrial scale with integrated basic services.



Design I.Y. HOUSING at Lonavala by S+PS Architects

Design.I.Y HOUSING at Lonavala by S+PS Architects
Design.I.Y HOUSING at Lonavala by S+PS Architects

People looking for a house to call home in urban areas seldom have an ability to make choices about anything -its size, layout, finishes, etc. It is mostly about how much square feet your budget can afford and then a take it or leave it situation in terms of choice. Mostly developer driven, it ends up being about efficiencies, mass production, duplication, speed, etc. While the world has moved on such that you have a choice about everything from how you like your coffee to how you personalize your denims and cars, the world of housing has still to catch up.  While we have seen concepts like public participation, do-it-yourself, mass customization, crowdsourcing, etc. span several aspects of society – in architecture in India it is nowhere to be seen. The project in Lonavala is an attempt to see if this is possible to enable in housing and that too in a developer driven model.  Homeowners get to choose from a range of sizes and configurations from a 1.5 BHK to a 5BHK, a variety of types within a size, locations, floors, a choice of walk ups, internal stairs, railings, screens, windows, toilet layouts, tiles etc. The particular combination that each one chooses allows one to individualize their home to reflect their own identity. To make it all manageable and executable, it is regulated with a limited palette of choices such that certain efficiencies of mass housing are possible through repetition.

Design I.Y. HOUSING at Lonavala by S+PS Architects 240
Site Plan + Section

We started with the idea, that what one really needs is an open adaptable space with good height, a Verandah and a patch of green with the open sky above. We looked at examples of colonial houses set in gardens in Lonavala, with a Verandah around and with good lofty ceilings.  Our smallest module was of 40sq.m. So we started with what we thought was a good room width of 11’6″ and extruded that into a tube of 30 feet long with a garden attached at one end.  We raised the height to 14’6”, which allowed for a small loft to be added in the center of the space, which could become a “free” half bedroom that could accommodate children, an extra grandparent or be used as a hobby space.  This was inspired by our observation that even in the smallest spaces in the slums people added a small loft for sleeping or storage to make better use of their small footprints.  Below the low height of the loft were accommodated service spaces like the toilets, kitchens, wardrobes etc. This then became a basic module, which was used to design all the units in the whole scheme, eventually encompassing 8 different types of homes along with shops and offices in the amenities block.

The fist and arm shaped 3.9 acre site was an old Parsi sanitarium with large mature trees and situated next to the train tracks and a railway crossing. It was flat in the front arm part and rose to a plateau of about 1.5 meters in the middle of the fist, dropping again towards the periphery. It has been our effort to retain the fundamental character of the site, it topography, as many of the trees as possible, and even a few existing buildings that we converted into a heritage clubhouse.  The site profile determined a street configuration in the front, entered through the gateway of the commercial building and culminated in a large open common garden court around which the remaining buildings were arranged. A green buffer zone and the clubhouse allowed the residential development to be set back a bit from the tracks. Vehicular movement is contained to a very small part of the site allowing for a variety of pedestrian networks to crisscross the site-several times terminating in small pocket play areas or a wooded park.

We see the spaces provided as a setting and a backdrop for the humdrum and messiness of daily life to be lived and for nature to begin to take over through the several green spaces provided.  Hopefully a community – aware of their similarities and respectful of their differences – will form and flourish here.


Project Facts
PROJECT TITLE                                            :               Design.I.Y HOUSING
PROJECT NAME                                          :               SHANTIVAN
LOCATION                                                      :               Nagargaon, Lonavala
CLIENT                                                               :               MRP Associates
DESIGN ARCHITECTS                              :               S+PS Architects
DESIGN TEAM                                              :               Pinkish Shah, Shilpa Gore-Shah, Divya Malu, Pooja Satam, Benny Mathew, Pratik Taishete, Divya Jain, Nusrat Karovalia, Rhea Lopes
SITE AREA                                                       :               15700 Square Meters       3.88 Acres
FSI PROJECT AREA                                  :              7128 Square Meters
LIASION ARCHITECTS                             :               Kanhaiya Bhurat Architects, Lonavala.
STRUCTURAL ENGINEER                   :               Rajeev Shah & Associates, Mumbai.
MEP CONSULTANTS                               :               Arkk Consultants, Mumbai. R.N.Joshi
LANDSCAPE CONSULTANTS            :               Roots Design, Pune. Prachi & Umesh Wakaley
PROJECT MANAGEMENT                   :              NIPRA Consultants, Mumbai.
CHIEF SITE ENGINEER                            :               Khalil Sheikh
INITIATION OF PROJECT                     :              2006
COMPLETION OF PROJECT                :               Phase 2 Ongoing
PHOTOGRAPHERS: Sebastian Zachariah, Ira Gosalia,  Pinkish Shah


* IIA Awards 2015 for Excellence in Architect, Residential Projects – Housing
* Crossroads Project of the Year 2016
* NDTV Design & Architecture Awards 2016
Winner, Architecture Award : Group Housing
* Rethinking the Future Sustainability Award 2016
Winner, First Award: Category Housing (Built)

Zephyr, a residential apartment, at Pune, by PMA Madhushala, Prasanna Morey

Zyphyr, Pune, PMA Madhushala


Pune is one of the fastest urbanizing cities in India due to rapid increase in population and migration of people from varied cultural backgrounds. Here, the potential residents vary from a group of individuals to a nuclear family sharing a unit with more room in lesser affordable carpet area. Financial crunches and Property rate hike are the factors which governs the market demand resulting in high density housing characterized by towers of repetitive units with poor habitable space.

Considering the above parameters and clients financial aspects, Zephyr provides humane habitable space rooted in culture and sensitive to climate considering the diverse and dynamic needs of the users with a carpet area of 90 Sq.m.

Site Description:

Zephyr, by PMA Madhushala, Pune

The site is surrounded by high rise apartments with a plot of 1800 Sq.m. oddly L shaped with a combination of square shape appropriate for apartment on south west and long rectangular strip for clubhouse in north east.


Surrounded by high-rise building from three sides, low rise development would have struggled for light and ventilation. Further the odd shaped site would not allow the horizontal spanning of building, so zephyr happened to be 11 storied high rise building. The building is divided into north and south block to achieve light, ventilation and view from all sides connected with service core at the centre. South block is further tilted to catch and create south- west wind pressure. The open terrace of each unit maintains the cross ventilation and connectivity with other units of the block. Each unit has toilet ducts and dry balcony on east- west facade to provide thermal barrier and windows on north –south for ventilation to primary habitable spaces.

Zephyr, Pune, by PMA Madhushala
Site Plan


The two blocks have perforated concrete screen that protects from sun, rain and traffic noise and gives a homogeneous appearance to the building.


Zephyr, A residential Apartment at Pune, by PMA Madhushala
Staggered Window

The staggered angular windows of each unit open in the direction for south wind maintaining privacy from the opposite unit. Each bedroom has ribbon window providing panoramic view with low lintel for optimum light without glare. The perforation varies with respect to the space and its usability with privacy, maintaining thermal comfort to the users.


To attain Design flexibilities, closely space Grid of 200mm used as the module for entire construction. RCC Framed structure with beamless filler slab has been used that creates free-flowing spaces. A cavity concrete block of size 400x200x150mm, locally made on site becomes the filler which allows a beam less soffit and to incorporate concealed light fixtures. Thermal insulation, weight reduction, and the most important appropriate design contribute to cost efficiency and high quality structure in county like India.

All internal walls are constructed in Ferro-cement of 50mm thickness to get maximum space and easy execution.


Zephyr, Pune, by PMA Madhushala
Club House

The Clubhouse is designed with the Indian traditional concept ‘Devrai’ of retaining trees around 100m radius of religious space allows ecological conservation. This narrow plot of 12m width and 64m length drove us to create a brick structure that evolves from ground to subdue its existence on site. The roof garden shelters a layer of spaces merging through parallel walls with brick arches along courtyards and water bodies merging with thick plantation creating a habitat for the users.

Zephyr, Pune, by PMA Madhushala
Club House – Isometric

Zephyr, Pune, by PMA Madhushala
Club House Plan and Section


Project name : Zephyr
Architecture firm : PMA madhushala

Builder / owner – Akash Mehta
Design team : Prasanna Morey, Divya Jyoti, Darshan Phalak
Built area : 3600 sq.m
Photographer : Hemant Patil