Over Water / Design Workshop

© Hemant Patil

Architects: Design Workshop
Location: Pune,
Architect In Charge: Shabbir Unwala
Junior Architect For Project: Siddhath Rao
Structural Consultant: Vilas Agharkar
Main Fabricator: Sadik Inamdar
Year: 2010
Photographs: Hemant Patil

Interview: William Hunter Discusses Contested Urbanism in Dharavi

Slum, Mumbai, India; © Gynna Millan; Courtesy of Flickr User Development Planning Unit University College London

Dharavi – Asia’s largest slum of one million with an average density of 18,000 residents per acre – is amidst a heated debate between its people, the government and private investors as it sits on some of India’s hottest real estate in Mumbai. While the government is grappling for solutions on how to successfully dismantle the low-rise slum and relocate its residents to a high-rise podium style typology, the investor’s profit-driven approach has placed residents on the defense, “rendering Dharavi a perfect storm of contested urbanism,” as architect, urban designer and author William Hunter describes. 

In light of this, we would like to direct you to an interview by Andrew Wade of Polis in which discusses Dharavi’s dire situation and the motivation behind Hunter’s new book, Contested Urbanism in Dharavi: Writings and Projects for the Resilient City. Read the interview in its entirety here and read a recap on Dharavi’s situation here.

Kanpur Riverfront Development Proposal / Studio Symbiosis

Courtesy of

Designed as a sustainable master plan, the concept of water, waste, and energy management are integral to the concept of the Riverfront Development project. Proposed by Studio Symbiosis, conservation of energy on the basis of transport management has been designed as an active design element in the master plan, which is a part of an overall scheme for rehabilitation of the Ganga river and the Ganga riverfront. More images and architects’ description after the break.

Eagleton Weekend Home / VSDP

© Anand Jaju

Architects: Vivek Shankar Design Partnership
Location: Bangalore, India
Project Team: Vivek V Shankar, Elayaraja Subhalekha, Sunetra Yousuf
Area: 6,500 sqft
Year: 2012
Photographs: Anand Jaju

India’s Forgotten Stepwells

Agrasen ki Baoli, Delhi. Image © Victoria S. Lautman

It’s hard to imagine an entire category of architecture slipping off history’s grid, and yet that seems to be the case with ’s incomparable stepwells. Never heard of ‘em? Don’t fret, you’re not alone: millions of tourists – and any number of locals – lured to the subcontinent’s palaces, forts, tombs, and temples are oblivious to these centuries-old water-structures that can even be found hiding-in-plain-sight close to thronged destinations like Humayun’s Tomb in Delhi or Agra’s Taj Mahal.

But now, India’s burgeoning water crisis might lead to redemption for at least some of these subterranean edifices, which are being re-evaluated for their ability to collect and store water. With any luck, tourist itineraries will also start incorporating what are otherwise an “endangered species” of the architecture world.

Learn more about these stepwells’ curious histories, after the break…

Gurgaon 71 Residential Proposal / Maison Edouard François

© Luxigon

The Gurgaon 71 residential project proposal by Maison Edouard François represents French-style luxury living while simultaneously respecting Indian traditions. Located in Gurgaon, , these luxurious apartments make use of noble materials such as marble and wood and have large interiors, including double height spaces, and offer 360° views onto the surrounding landscape.  More images and architects’ description after the break.

DPS Kindergarden School / Khosla Associates

© Shamanth Patil

Architects: Khosla Associates
Location: Bangalore, India
Principal Designers: Sandeep Khosla and Amaresh Anand
Team: Sandeep Khosla, Amaresh Anand, and Bijeta Bachaspati
Client: Annabelle Manwaring
Area: 35000.0 ft2
Year: 2013
Photographs: Shamanth Patil

KMC Corporate Office / RMA Architects

© Robert Stephens

Architects: RMA Architects
Location: Cyber City, , India
Year: 2012
Photographs: Robert Stephens, Rahul Mehrotra, Courtesy of RMA Architects, Rajesh Vora, Carlos Chen

PA_House / atelier dnD

© Sebastian Zachariah

Architects: atelier dnD
Location: ,
Area: 20000.0 ft2
Year: 2012
Photographs: Sebastian Zachariah

Housing for Mahouts and their Elephants / RMA Architects

© Carlos Chen

Architects: RMA Architects
Location: Amber, Rajasthan, India
Architect In Charge: Rahul Mehrotra
Consultants: Integrated Designs, Vijay K. Patil & Associates
Area: 88 sqm
Year: 2010
Photographs: Carlos Chen, Charles Garcia, Rajesh Vora, Courtesy of

Think Tank Retreat / RMA Architects

© Romil Sheth

Architects: RMA Architects
Location: Valpoi, , India
Architect In Charge: Rahul Mehrotra
Consultants: Sewri Consultants (P)Ltd., Riyaz Rangawala, Sunil Services, Aseem Merchant
Area: 1,685.25 sqm
Year: 2009
Photographs: Romil Sheth, Rajesh Vora, Courtesy of RMA Architects

Aranya House / Modo designs

© Vishal Solanki / Radhika Pandit

Architects: Modo designs
Location: Aranya,
Architect In Charge: Arpan Shah
Area: 5,850 sqft
Year: 2013
Photographs: Vishal Solanki / Radhika Pandit

Magic Bus / RMA Architects

© Ariel Huber

Architects: RMA Architects
Location: , , India
Architect In Charge: Rahul Mehrotra
Consultants: Vijay K. Patil & Associates, D.R.Bellare, Riyaz Rangwala, Sunil Services, Sewri
Area: 2,415 sqm
Year: 2007
Photographs: Ariel Huber, Rahul Mehrotra, RMA Architects

House in a Tea Garden / RMA Architects

© Rahul Mehrotra

Architects: RMA Architects
Location: ,
Architect In Charge: Rahul Mehrotra
Area: 8,000 sq ft
Year: 2008
Photographs: Rahul Mehrotra, Rajesh Vora, RMA Architects

Designing the Future of Design: An Interview with Kumar Vyas by Victoria Lautman

Sketch of an eight petalled lotus, the inspiration for Vyas’ of the Jawaharlal Nehru Award for International Understanding. Image Courtesy of Kumar Vyas.

“What do we mean by education?” “What is design?” “Can design be taught?”

These were some of the questions a small group of innovative pioneers – huddled in the attic of Le Corbusier’s Sanskar Kendra museum – asked themselves when they set about creating what would become the National Institute of Design (NID) in Ahmedabad, ’s first design school. The year was 1962, and not only were there no designers in the country, the profession of design, for Indians, simply did not exist.

One of these pioneers – who would head the industrial design department, help formulate the school’s curriculum, and train its faculty members – was Kumar Vyas. Born in 1929, Vyas remained at NID for three decades, and continues to work from his office on the campus he helped create. His numerous articles and books were essential to establishing India’s current design-rich environment; two years ago, he received the prestigious Sir Misha Black Medal for Excellence in Design Education.

Vyas’ experience designing a design education is not only a fascinating journey, but also a source of inspiration – if architecture education took Vyas’ lessons to heart, and re-examined itself from square one, how would it be different?  Read Victoria Lautman’s interview with Vyas after the break, and tell us what you think in the comments below.

Motisons Tower / Kothari Associates

Courtesy of

Architects: Kothari Associates
Location: , India
Director: Utkarsh Kothari
Chief Architect: Ravindra Verma
Senior Architect: Rajesh Singh
Area: 50,000 sqft
Year: 2013
Photographs: Courtesy of Kothari Associates

Atali Ganga / RLDA

© Asif Khan

Architects: RLDA
Architect In Charge: Rahoul Singh, Lakshmi Chand Singh
Design Team: Rahoul Singh, Lakshmi Chand Singh, Kushal Lachchwani, Sajal Das, Ajay Saini
Structural: S.D Construction
Area: 2045.0 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Asif Khan

CSMVS – Visitor Centre at the Prince of Wales Museum / RMA Architects

© Rajesh Vora

Architects: RMA Architects
Location: ,
Year: 2011
Photographs: Rajesh Vora, Edmund Sumner