This Research presents a visionary proposal for the re-development land parcels of Chandigarh, into “Sustainable” Urban Centers.
The existing belt of Madhya Marg is predominantly occupied by commercial,institutional and office uses and comprises large “super blocks” with parking surrounding the buildings.
Through infill and reinterpretation of Le Corbusier’s design principles, and his team proposing high quality architecture in the selected sectoral node while preserving some of the existing structures the study explores the opportunity to create an improved public realm comprising a multitude of land uses, making the Madhya Marg more of a public realm than a divide.
Need of the Research
A need to evolve an understanding that Architecture and Technology in general, are moving towards artificially intelligent and ecologically benign solutions and have the potential to regenerate urban fabric.
Aim of the Research
Establish a new raison d’ etre for the existing buildings. In line with the previous research the aim of the thesis is to objectify that heritage can regenerate Urban Fabric and hence is a “hope” for the future not just a “dead asset.”- heritage with hope – not just dead asset.
Scope and parameters:
Owing to the paucity of resources and time bound nature of the project the report centres around the sectoral node of Government press Chandigarh, the core of Chandigarh (Phase 1)
To experiment further on evolution of a modern city and it’s built heritage and taking up an exemplary context of the City of Chandigarh to evaluate the same. A building on Madhya Marg of iconic character like the Government Press has the ability to offer ecologically friendly and sustainable solutions to REMOURBANISE the sectoral node (a major junction near the core of Chandigarh) of Madhya Marg .
The urban Eco cyborg idea implies not only the mix of the electronic (digital) with the organic (biological), but also a peculiar mix of high-tech with low-tech. This underlies an opportunity to make a history with Chandigarh. The Le Corbusier’s urban model of
the city is not misplaced with industrialization but the industrialization gives us a base of technology to render a fresh image of the City.
AREA OF EVALUATION: Apart from the city of Chandigarh, the area of Phase 1 has been evaluated for the qualities it possesses for the potential threats to regeneration.‘Fully developed area and second it offers scope for analysis vis a vis their intradynamics and interdynamics with other city functions as all these compete in many respects. Each thing at every moment is a participant in the present. In defining the urbanism, awareness of the present, thus appears as a necessary tool. When we build the city, this critical awareness permits us to make up for the shortcomings to retain (Bogunovich). With respect to the interventions listed below;
• Planning Adaptive reuse of the existing Heritage
• Redeveloping the dilapidated heritage
• Planning an integrative network along the node
Visual connections (both or one sided) and scaling of physical connections to create a complex inter relationship of blocks was a key feature in all Maxwell Fry’s buildings. As seen in all his works , the idea of connections remains prime. The focus on what happens outside is never lost.It seems difficult to actually decipher that what design process has led to the most introverted design of the press building. It remains contrary to thought of connections, which further makes us question; what part of it is actual heritage and what is an irregular procedural addition.
This palette suited Fry’s approach to design. He had rejected the use of concrete as facing material:”while my fellow architects took what I thought to be the easy course in buildings of mass concrete and violent even menacing proportionsI sought for what materials still bore the natural and human impress, using brick, slate, burnt tiles, timber….”All of Fry’s buildings speak of different scales in blocks and extroverted character. They may add elements to control entries and connects but they are holistically speaking extrovert.
Maxwell Fry looked up to Chandigarh not only as an urban experiment to use his favorite architectural palette but also as a new precedent to his learnings from the Tropical Housing.Mechanical façade of the building contributes to the industrial character of Chandigarh and gives it a path to tread on with the learnings from such technological features and new materials.
Inferences and Basic Concept :
The idea by looking at the campus emanates that the introverted campus, the dilapidated edges need to be deliberated upon, not with just new uses but a regenerated vocabulary in tandem with the architects’ philosophy and the character of the city. The idea was to combine heritage with the current needs. Of course the most important need was the confluence of the Philosophy of Maxwell Fry, gauged for the current heritage structure. The entire complex seemingly doesn’t qualify as the “Heritage” as the philosophy of the architect in other projects is a testament to it. To choose between what to keep and what not to ? The Concept evolves from different levels of intervention primarily based on current needs, Assessment of available structures and the current needs of the city with a focus on whether a hope for regeneration exists.