Managing wetness and adopting lightness - Rescue - Community Centre

Course Mentors:  Sabaa Giradkar, Malak Singh Gill, Shahveer Irani

Managing wetness is to respond to the flooding condition due to rains, the humidity levels in the built form as well as to manage the water flow in the structure. Lightness responds to either one or all of the following but not limited to: visual expression, time, resource efficiency by optimizing material usage, dismantability, seismic efficiency, cost efficiency. The structural expression of the architecture should be light from inside and the immediate outside.

26 July 2005 rains resulted in causalities and heavy losses within the city of Mumbai. The reason being the flooding of rivers within the city. Poisar River which originates from the Sanjay Gandhi National Park and opens up into the Arabian Sea is now highly polluted with the dumping of industrial effluents from workshops and sewage from slums and storm water drains into it. In recent times it had narrowed down, and became shallower due to the presence of the accumulation of silt, debris and plastic. Sunderpada settlement in Kandivali exists adjacent to one of the stretches of the Poisar River. It faces extremities of rains and flooding due to rains every year. This settlement on the relatively low lying area is hence left with no option but to evacuate their houses and take shelterelsewhere for a period of 12-48 hrs depending on the rain intensity.
The calamity, its resultant losses give opportunities to intervene and design a rescue centre for the settlement dwellers. This rescue centre will also function as a community or a resilience centre for the rest of the time of the year. The design challenge is to work with the idea of lightness. Students, based on their arguments have a freehand to choose its detailed physical nature like it being permanent/temporary and or modular. Materiality and system details will also guide the design.

Managing water requirements within the built form will equally be necessary while responding to the water condition in terrain context.