Themed architecture in modern cities
By Gaurav Sanghavi Co-founder – Pentaspace
Every building is designed for a specific purpose. While functionality defines the basic blueprint of a space, its form can be made aesthetically pleasing in a number of ways. The building can have a persona in the form of a theme that makes aesthetically more appealing while also hinting on its purpose and surroundings.
The team at Pentaspace Design Studio has got a flair for creating such design marvels following specific themes with respect to the overall design of the construction, materials and furniture used, as well as amenities offered in case of residential towers. Following are some of their designs that have made a mark when designing themed spaces –
Rainforest, Mumbai | 10 lakh sq. ft.
Rainforest as a theme surfaced following a site visit that revealed a hilltop with views of the Powai Lake and Aarey Colony greens covered with lush green trees and heavy contour ranging from 0 to 13 meters. The idea was to retain maximum tress on the site while also acquiring maximum view of the Powai Lake and Aarey colony for the proposed 10 residential towers.
Exploiting the topography, pockets for recreational areas are created between the buildings with a large car-free zone and gardens at different levels. The entrance podium reflects the Rainforest theme with tree shaped canopies and green walls. Moreover, the concept resonates in the design of the entrance lobbies with use of natural stone motifs as flooring and wall dado, the wooden log furniture used along with balusters designed with African tribal artwork.
The parking was designed in a way that it is not seen from any drop off areas and the project human eye level view is rich in lush green landscaped area. The tree trunk and its branches symbolically made their way into the 14-storey building elevation. The buildings were designed and planned in a staggered form keeping in mind the view and the topography of the site. A meandering road (like in a forest) connects the drop off areas at different building lobbies. Each apartment was designed with a minimum of two sides open for cross ventilation and the view.
The sound of flowing water was added to complete the forest experience. To do so, the pool was designed as an infinity pool located on top of the clubhouse with its overflow flowing down to the filtration plant located in the basement. This created a natural waterfall infusing the sound of water into the micro ecosystem of the clubhouse. Maximizing the site and its verdant offering, the project recreates a resort atmosphere within the fast-paced city life. Be it the earthy colour of the facades, the tree drop-off canopies, green walled car parking spaces, the clubhouse with an infinity pool and the landscape areas all reflect the rainforest jungle.
Aroha, Mumbai | 3 lakh sq. ft.
Theme: Buddhist Caves
This project derived inspiration from the magnificent aspects of Buddhism to create cognizance with the adjacent Buddhist Caves that have been identified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The divine figurines of Buddha placed strategically in the entranceway and elaborate fresco paintings on the ceilings are meant to draw an association with the Buddhist culture. These fresco paintings create an instant association of the residents/visitors to the cave dweller.
A long drop off canopy with cut-outs lets the sunlight penetrate through the entire space creating a natural environment. The caves always narrate a story, to recreate this, the story of Buddha, is carved on the walls of life lobbies entice the young minds while they walk to their apartments. Natural stones are used for wall cladding and flooring, which are in tune with the language carried all over the project. The flooring on the podium level/ landscape area is of stamp concrete to resemble and feel like cave floor bed.
Aroha has been designed in a way to create a micro-environment for its inhabitants amidst the concrete jungle by amalgamating the cave architecture features into modern architecture to inculcate a sense of awareness & curiosity of the heritage grandeur present in the vicinity.
Zen World, Mumbai | 6.5 lakh sq. ft.
Away from the hustle and bustle of the city, Zen world is created to relax and rejuvenate its inhabitants. Every residence, with its thoughtfully curated amenities and design aesthetics, promises to be the sanctuary of calm. The space offers a world of serenity with it lush themed gardens, club house and spill over spaces.
Each apartment is designed in a way to get good light and ventilation and no over looking into the other apartments. To convey the concept in design elements, ducts are covered with Zen inspired jalli designs and the roofs have been designed as Japanese roofs. The architecture is designed with outside to inside concept, where majority of the apartment in the complex are over looking the lush green landscaped ares. Not only this, the interior spaces and the clubhouse emanates tranquility and creates a serene ecosystem.
Gift City, Ahmedabad | 40 acres
Theme: Heritage & Culture
Ahmedabad is a UNESCO heritage city and is termed as the architectural capital of India. It has set the goals for the world for its culture, social, flavors, tradition, festival, history and innovation. Being a residential development in this integrated city, the team derived its concept from the traditional and historic importance of its location. Step-Well, central courtyards, jali/relief work have been incorporated to create a cognizance of traditional/historical with modern architecture.
The buildings are oriented along the sun path and are chamfered from the corners to allow light penetration and cross ventilation in the courtyard creating a pleasant micro-environment. The funnel concept is used to design the courtyard between two buildings to maintain ambient temperature throughout the year. The service-core are introduced on the East-West Axis to avoid heat gain.
An emergent India represents a bright beacon on the shores of financial growth. GIFT, an integrated city is under-construction between Ahmedabad and Gandhinagar in Gujarat providing next-in-class infrastructure, connectivity, technology, legal framework and is emerging as a platform for businesses across the world. The project involves development of a new city with innovative expansion and modern infrastructure.
Gujrat thrives on community living. Community spaces such as retail, restaurants, club house are designed in the form of step-well to keep the ambient spaces cool in the arid heat of Ahemdabad. Sky gardens have been introduced at refuge floor levels, which help providing community and green spaces for maximum social gathering and thus creating a sense of neighborhood.