Ar. Akshat Bhatt - Architecture Discipline

Ar. Akshat Bhatt - Architecture Discipline
The pandemic and the current human condition have become markers in our collective history as the forbearers of change –– of a push towards minimal resource consumption and sustainable living.
Our homes today have re-emerged as sanctuaries –– places of safe and ‘socially-distanced’ work, leisure, and engagement –– and our verandahs, balconies, and terraces as thresholds from which we stay connected with the world at large. The fundamental way we live, how we interact with our families or move within our homes, hasn’t changed much, apart from repurposing rooms for quarantine or creating a dedicated quiet zone for work.

Our value systems and design sensibilities need an urgent re-evaluation. Architecture has the power of affecting and controlling the behaviour of people who engage with it. This must start with an understanding of what is essential for sustenance and how our homes connect to the outside world for delivery of these products or public services. Where does our food, water, and power come from? Where does our waste go? What if our homes could be completely off this grid?

Architecture Discipline

I envision low-rise residential developments that would be navigable by foot.
When compared to high-rise apartment buildings with high densities and large numbers of elevator banks and common spaces, this scheme would allow for easier and more efficient isolation in the event of a contagion. Each dwelling unit (or a sector with 3-4 dwelling units) would have independent administrative control and access points serviced by small, autonomous public travel capsules, which would ply frequently with flexible routes right to the traveller’s destination, limiting physical interaction with others. These vehicles would also reduce our current dependence on the high-density public transport model, providing a more efficient transit solution while ensuring social distancing.

Zooming in, the architecture of the units would be based on modularity and create open-ended frameworks for flexible dwelling systems. An adaptable framework with well-serviced and well-lit spaces that can be used for multiple activities in the short term also offers the possibility of a longer life span for a building, and a variety of possible long-term uses.

Architecture Discipline

As work, leisure and domestic activities become interchangeable, buildings will act like evolving landscapes.
Open plan studio apartments with collapsible partition walls and roofs and flexible storage systems will allow residents to reconfigure their homes, enclosing and combining spaces or lending them to the greens, as needed. Within the unit, distinct zones would be created –– from community spaces such as arrival courtyards, foyers, and formal living rooms to host guests, to spaces for the family to engage, to private rooms for individual inhabitants –– which could be easily sealed off with movable partitions when needed. Isolation wards could be housed in the basement with direct access to the outdoors via sunken green courtyards for fresh air and light.

Architecture Discipline

The only way for architecture to remain relevant longer than its period of conception is by creating buildings that are self-reliant.
For buildings to function with minimum resource consumption, they would have to be entirely self-sufficient and off the grid. They would rely on groundwater to meet their potable water needs and generate their own power with solar panels or PV arrays.

Thermal massing will reduce heat gain and light wells will double up as wind tunnels and enhance passive cooling; the reduced mechanical cooling requirements could be met with geothermal energy through earth air tunnels and displacement ventilation (conditioned air supply with diffusers near the floor and exhaust from ceiling height level to reduce mixing as opposed to conventional ACs that supply air from the side).

Architecture Discipline

Individual pockets of greens and open spaces on multiple levels will not just aid ingress of natural light and fresh air but also house grow-rooms for farming food through techniques such as hydroponics and aeroponics. All dry and wet waste generated will be treated on site with the compost being utilised as feed for farming, while all outgoing waste to the grid will be taxed to incentivise responsible resource consumption.

Ar. Sumit Dhawan, Cityspace’82 Architects

Building materials play a prominent role in the technical aspects of a built form, including factors like insulation, acoustics, etc. Building material selection is as important as the form development process in order to improve the quality of the built form Read More ...

Ar. Nilanjan Bhowal, Design Consortium India

We have reached a point where architects and engineers are planning for the entire life cycle of a building: from conception to demolition, providing alternatives at every step of the way to reduce harm to the environment during the entire process Read More ...

Ar. Manish Kumat Manish, Kumat Design Cell

A series of modular walls, breathable walls, and porous osmosis walls to ensure a controlled transfer of moisture and odour in the air, use of materials such as reclaimed wood, cork, AAC blocks, energy-efficient lighting fixtures, double glazed windows and automation Read More ...

Rohit Suraj, Founder & CEO, Urban Zen

Material selection is a crucial part of the design process and also depends on the client’s likes and expectations to a large extent. While choosing a material to work with, its intrinsic physical characteristics and experiential qualities are always the best parameters Read More ...

Ar. Harish Tripathi, Arhta

The role of local materials and technology cannot be undermined and their acceptability at the government and public level can create appropriate solutions. Amidst the mass movement and decline in trade as repercussions of the pandemic, the importance of using local Read More ...

Ar. Sandeep Joshi, Artisan

The trend is moving towards stronger materials that can better withstand the test of time, natural disasters, and give back to the environment instead of taking away from it. As the supply of natural resources becomes scarcer, we will be forced to use renewable and recyclable Read More ...

The Value of Material Choices

Context, functionality, and aesthetics play a crucial role in architecture with one of the most influential aspects being the value of material choices. For most buildings, the key features defining their ‘iconicity’ can be summarized as strong concept design, relevant Read More ...

Ar. Aahana Miller - ABM Architects

There needs to be a change in the mindset of designers who must do away with fussy detailing and specify materials that would show dirt and be easy to clean. Homeowners are looking for alternate homes and homes away from the cities. They also want fabrics and materials Read More ...

Ar. Dinesh Verma & Ar. Akshara Verma - ACE Group Architects

In the name of development, we have overdone, over-consumed, and overlooked nature, and instead of being friendly, have turned hostile towards it. Society has knowingly compromised on the average area required by a person to be naturally comfortable, in the name of ‘expensive real estate’ Read More ...

Ar. Shobhan Kothari - ADND

Homes will now begin to address not only the pragmatic aspect of design but also question the ‘wellness’ quotient in design. Designs will evolve from having ‘curb-appeal’ to a more socially contributing device. Homegrown compost from waste to manure for plants, design with less frills Read More ...

Ar. Harish Tripathi & Jyoti D Tripathi - Arhta

Post pandemic, our perception and usage of space has changed drastically. Planning parameters and appropriate environments for habitat have gained a lot of importance. As people were confined to their homes, they began to actively appreciate the necessity of having appropriateness Read More ...

Ar. Aquin Noel - Aquin Noel Design Commune

Creating buildings that permit adaptive reuse would be notable changes. The idea of touch and feel might slowly transform into do not touch; however, I strongly believe that architecture should be appreciated by touch and feel. Technological advancements shall soon bring Read More ...

Ar. Sandeep Joshi - Artisan

The next few years will see a renewed interest in using design and architecture as social, political, and economic tools. In the aftermath of the pandemic, we should expect to see buildings becoming more sustainable and energy-efficient. They will also need to be designed with pandemic Read More ...

Ar. Arpan Johari - AW Design

Closed and conditioned spaces and buildings that have international movement like airports, will have to be completely thought of in a new light. Humans are adaptive species; lessons learnt from the pandemic would certainly lead to changes in the built environment. For starters Read More ...

Ar. Biswabhushan Beura - Bentel Associates

Retail architecture will cater more consciously to general well-being and actively focus on curating unique spatial experiences. Due to the pandemic, an important shift in architecture will be that large-scale public buildings will be remarkably well-ventilated and spacious Read More ...

Prof. Charanjit S. Shah - Creative Group

We need to focus more on natural resource management to create healthy environments. The pandemic has taught us the real values of nature and our natural resources. It has taught us that we need to be minimalistic in our design approach and create human settlements wherein we live Read More ...