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Chandigarh Under Siege: Le Corbusier’s Capitol Complex Threatened by Housing Development

Dr. Vikramāditya Prakāsh is a professor at the University of Washington and the founder of the Chandigarh Urban Lab. In the following article he discusses the past, present and future of Le Corbusier's vision for Chandigarh, explaining the reasons behind the petition he started against a new residential development to the North of the city.

Le Corbusier’s famous Capitol Complex in Chandigarh, India is about to be ruined by the construction of a gaggle of towers to its immediate north. The new project, called ‘TATA Camelot’, is being developed by TATA Housing, the real estate wing of TATA Group, a major multinational and one of India's largest industrial companies. TATA Camelot’s 27 proposed towers, each between 13 and 36 storys tall, will not only destroy the architectural and urban design integrity of the Capitol, they will also disrupt the fragile Himalayan ecology of the area. In the contest between development and preservation, it is the larger public good and the long term perspective of the ecological that must be prioritized.

TATA Camelot Phase I The Secretariat and the Assembly and their relationship to the mountains as it exists today. Image © Vikramāditya Prakāsh The Secretariat and its relationship to the mountains as it exists today. Image © Vikramāditya Prakāsh The master-plan concept overlaid over an aerial view of the city today showing the integral relationship between the ecology of the site and the city. Image Courtesy of Chandigarh Urban Lab, University of Washington on Google Earth original

Pavilion in a Garden / CollectiveProject

© Tina Nandi Stephens © Tina Nandi Stephens © Tina Nandi Stephens © Tina Nandi Stephens

1102 Penthouse / Apical Reform

  • Architects: Apical Reform
  • Location: Paarijat Residences, Judges Bunglow Road, Sumeru, Bodakdev, Ahmedabad, Gujarat 380054,India
  • Area: 5000.0 ft2
  • Project Year: 2014
  • Photographs: Apical Reform

© Apical Reform © Apical Reform © Apical Reform © Apical Reform

The Skewed House / LIJO.RENY.architects

  • Architects: LIJO.RENY.architects
  • Location: Kunnathurmedu Post Office, Coimbatore Road, Kunathurmedu, Palakkad, Kerala 678013, India
  • Design Team: Lijo Jos and Reny Lijo
  • Area: 4568.0 ft2
  • Project Year: 2014
  • Photographs: Praveen Mohandas

© Praveen Mohandas © Praveen Mohandas © Praveen Mohandas © Praveen Mohandas

Tomoe Villas / Note-D

  • Architects: Note-D
  • Location: Mandva, Raigad, Alibag, Maharashtra - 402201, India
  • Architect In Charge: Hemant Purohit, Smita Khanna
  • Design Team: Pierre Michael, Sneha Borkar, Bhuvana Selvaraj, Teja Choudhary
  • Area: 5500.0 ft2
  • Project Year: 2014
  • Photographs: Courtesy of Note_D, Tina Nandi

Courtesy of Note_D Courtesy of Note_D Courtesy of Note_D © Tina Nandi

Mondeal Square in Ahmedabad / Blocher Blocher India Pvt. Ltd.

Courtesy of Blocher Blocher Partners Courtesy of Blocher Blocher Partners Courtesy of Blocher Blocher Partners Courtesy of Blocher Blocher Partners

Bhuwalka House / Khosla Associates

  • Architects: Khosla Associates
  • Location: Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
  • Principal Designers: Sandeep Khosla and Amaresh Anand
  • Design Team: Sandeep Khosla , Amaresh Anand , Akanksha Chajjer and Moiz Faizulla
  • Project Year: 2014
  • Photographs: Shamanth Patil J

© Shamanth Patil J © Shamanth Patil J © Shamanth Patil J © Shamanth Patil J

AJA Restaurant / Arch.Lab

  • Architects: Arch.Lab
  • Location: Sector 11, Chandigarh, Chandigarh, India
  • Design Team: Harsimran Singh, Mohit Vij, Taruni Aggarwal, Jasnam Kaur
  • Area: 900.0 ft2
  • Project Year: 2014
  • Photographs: Purnesh Dev Nikhanj

© Purnesh Dev Nikhanj © Purnesh Dev Nikhanj © Purnesh Dev Nikhanj © Purnesh Dev Nikhanj

Sachdeva Farmhouse / Spaces Architects@ka

  • Architects: Spaces Architects@ka
  • Location: New Delhi, Delhi, India
  • Architect In Charge: Kapil Aggarwal
  • Design Team: Kapil Aggarwal, Pawan Sharma, Shankar Vignesh, Heebok
  • Area: 20000.0 ft2
  • Photographs: Akhil bakshi

© Akhil bakshi © Akhil bakshi © Akhil bakshi © Akhil bakshi

Ekya Early Years Kanakapura Road / CollectiveProject

  • Architects: CollectiveProject
  • Location: Kanakapura Road, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
  • Design Team: Cyrus Patell, Eliza Higgins, Ajantha S., Grégoire Rossignol
  • Area: 25000.0 ft2
  • Project Year: 2014
  • Photographs: Tina Nandi Stephens

© Tina Nandi Stephens © Tina Nandi Stephens © Tina Nandi Stephens © Tina Nandi Stephens

Architect’s Office / Spaces Architects@ka

  • Architects: Spaces Architects@ka
  • Location: New Delhi, Delhi, India
  • Architect In Charge: Kapil Aggarwal
  • Design Team: Kapil Aggarwal, Pawan Sharma, Karan Arora, Chander Mohan Kaushik
  • Carpentry Contractor: Manoj Carpenters
  • Area: 150.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2013
  • Photographs: Bharat Aggarwal

© Bharat Aggarwal © Bharat Aggarwal © Bharat Aggarwal © Bharat Aggarwal

Group DCA Office / DCA Architects

  • Architects: DCA Architects
  • Location: Sultanpur, New Delhi, Delhi, India
  • Architect In Charge: Amit Aurora, Rahul Bansal
  • Contractor: DCA Workshop
  • Area: 413.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photographs: Kapil Kamra

© Kapil Kamra © Kapil Kamra © Kapil Kamra © Kapil Kamra

IA&B's 361° Conference: DIS.ARCHITECTURE - Discourse, Intuition and Syntax in Architecture

Over the past seven years, Indian Architect & Builder Magazine’s (IA&B) 361° Conference has evolved into the singular most relevant platform for discussion and discourse on architecture and design in India. Since its inception, the conference has captured the progressive nature of design, creating a forum for emerging and influential practices in India. As an eclectic, thought-provoking and egalitarian platform, 361° in its eighth edition will continue to celebrate the power of thoughts and ideas and initiate a truly relevant dialogue on architecture and design.

RIBA To Open Chapter In India

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) have announced that they will open a chapter in India in 2015 in order to offer "enhanced membership support, networking opportunities and a forum for local activities and CPD." It will also allow the RIBA to work "collaboratively with the Indian Institute for Architects (IIA) for the enhancement of the profession." The launch of this branch of the institute follows the opening of chapters in the USA, Hong Kong and the Gulf in recent years. According to Chloe Sadler, RIBA Head of International Chapters, the RIBA currently has "just under 100 members in India who are working tirelessly to uphold the principles of the [institute] and share the importance of good design." "This new Chapter will cement the RIBA’s commitment to support our members in India through knowledge exchange and the celebration of architecture."

Army Rowing Node / KSA Architects

  • Architects: KSA Architects
  • Location: Pune, Maharashtra, India
  • Architect In Charge: Nemish Shah, Kumarpal Kothari
  • Design Team: Pierre Michael, Mili Parekh
  • Area: 8000.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2012
  • Photographs: Nemish Shah

© Nemish Shah © Nemish Shah © Nemish Shah © Nemish Shah

DupleXS / architectureRED

  • Architects: architectureRED
  • Location: Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Design Team: Biju Kuriakose, Kishore Panikkar, Kani Pandian, Yasir Azami, Preetha John, Apoorva Madhusudan
  • Area: 17000.0 ft2
  • Project Year: 2014
  • Photographs: Prem, Rajan Gero

© Prem, Rajan Gero © Prem, Rajan Gero © Prem, Rajan Gero © Prem, Rajan Gero

Triburg Headquarters / S.P.A Design

  • Architects: S.P.A Design
  • Location: Sector 22A, Sector 22, Gurgaon, Haryana, India
  • Area: 20000.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2010
  • Photographs: Amit Pasrichha

© Amit Pasrichha © Amit Pasrichha © Amit Pasrichha © Amit Pasrichha